June - November
0.5 - 1.2
Leaf blades rolled and narrow, inflorescence large, gauzy and purple, florets are single at branch tips with thin awn. The inflorescence resembles Eragrostis sp. except that Muhlenbergia has one floret at the end of each ray while Eragrostis has many and Muhlenbergia usually has narrower leaves. Sterile plants of Muhlenbergia capillaris may be confused with those of Spartina patens and Spartina spartinae. Spartinae is easily identified by its sharp pointed leaf tips and the absence of cauline leaves. Spartina patens has ligule that is a 1-1.5 mm long fringe of hairs distinguishing it from Muhlenbergia capillaris which has a ligule that is 2-3 mm long and membranous.
Seed germination of members of the genus Muhlenbergia is improved by cold/moist stratification (Steffen 1997). Seeds average appproximately 2,600,000/lb.
The seeds of some species of Muhlenbergia were used to make flour by the Mescalero and Chiricahua Apache Indians (Opler 1936). It ranges throughout eastern United States. A common and important grass in coastal prairie.
Sandy prairies and openings in pine forests, dry woods, and savannahs.