March 12, 2010
Watching the Grass Grow
This cheat grass (Bromus tectorum) is one of the first grasses to start growing in the Spring here in Denver. And it is the first one to go to seed as early as May. This is because it is not a native plant. It is an invasive grass that has become the most common plant in Denver alleys and along byways. It is crowding out the native grasses. Cheat grass differs from the native grasses in that it goes to seed twice a year. The native plants seed out in the fall, but cheat grass seeds out in the spring and again in the fall. This gives it an edge over the hardy native grasses, which typically are extremely diverse in species. Now there is mostly cheat grass wherever you see grasses greening up in the alleys. Yes, it is spring and the green is coming back. Sap is rising all around and I, too, hope to get some energy back as the weather warms up.