Justin Seed is an essential business. Please call us at 940-648-2751 to set up curbside service.
Bowie Hydro-mulcher® Erosion Products Fertilizer and Seed
524 South Hwy 156 Justin, TX 76247 • 940-648-2751

Short-lived, native, perennial, warm season bunchgrass with densely tufted culms found from Canada to Mexico west of the Mississippi River. Mainly used in mixes of native grasses where moisture requirements are low.  Purple threeawn inhabits dry, coarse, or sandy soils in desert valleys and foothills.

Alternate Names

Common Names:  wiregrass, red threeawn, dogtown grass, prairie threeawn

Scientific Names:  A. longiseta


Forage value of purple threeawn depends largely on the other species growing in association in the region. In the Southwest, where forage is limited, purple threeawn is considered good spring forage while the plants remain green. In Arizona and New Mexico its abundance and fair palatability make purple threeawn a highly important source of forage. In northern areas where more palatable forage grasses are available, threeawn is considered weedy with little value (Stubendieck et al. 1994; USDA, 1937).


Purple threeawn is popular among horticulturalists for use in low water landscaping, especially in the Southwestern United States. Its reddish purple coloring and compact bunchgrass habit make it desirable. It spreads by seed readily, however, and can overwhelm landscape elements and become a nuisance. Seed also sticks to animal fur and human socks. Seed heads should be removed before maturity to prevent spread (Xeriscape Today 2010).

Purple threeawn provides some cover to small mammals and reptiles in sparsely vegetated desert areas. Native bees will make nests in the root structure

Grow Height

Cold Tolerance


Planting Rate




1-2 PLS.


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