All 50 states have a whole grocery list of official state somethings – state flowers, state trees, state birds, etc. Not all of the states, however, have official state grasses. This is disappointing, but not unexpected. It’s the usual slight delivered to grasses in general, despite the fact that grasses exist not only in all 50 sates, obviously, but also exist in every known climate zone on land (plus a few in the ocean) except extreme polar-type climates. There is not a single tree in Antarctica, but there are some hearty species of grasses in the warmer coastal places. Apart from the Sun, and the Earth itself, grasses are probably the most important things in terms of food production. Grasses give us most of our food, either directly (rice, corn, etc), or indirectly (feed for livestock). As you might’ve guessed by now, I’m a grass-man, and I’m not ashamed of it. ;-)
Anyway, some states, including most of the Great Plains states, with one notable exception which I’ll get to in a later blog, have adopted a state grass. As is my usual route, I will start in the north and work my way south through the Great Plains States, starting with Montana.
Montana’s State Grass – Bluebunch Wheatgrass a.k.a. Pseudoroegneria Spicata
This is a wide ranging grass found throughout much of western North America, and it also happens to be the state grass of Washington and Iowa. It grows taller in wetter climates and can be quite stubby in drier ones. It adapts well to lots of climates and as a result can be found from Alaska all the way to Texas, so if you live somewhere in its habitat, get out there and hug some bluebunch wheatgrass today!