blue·​stem | \ ˈblü-ˌstem How to pronounce bluestem (audio) \

Definition of bluestem

1 : a tall North American grass (Andropogon gerardii synonym A. furcatus) that has smooth bluish leaf sheaths and slender spikes borne in pairs or clusters, is a dominant grass of the originally tallgrass prairies, and is used for hay and forage

called also big bluestem

— compare sand bluestem

Examples of bluestem in a Sentence

Recent Examples on the Web Little bluestem, a widespread prairie grass, grows from Mexico to Canada, and bison can tolerate temperatures ranging from –40 to 120 degrees Fahrenheit. Julia Rosen, The Atlantic, 25 July 2022 And bluestem and switch grass reach their maximum heights in September. Washington Post, 25 Mar. 2022 Feel the satiny fluff of butterfly weed gone to seed and the silky tufts of shoulder-high bushy bluestem. Chadd Scott, Forbes, 4 Oct. 2021 Perennials with fall foliage changes include switch grass and little bluestem, which can blush plum-purple, burgundy, or golden; the bluestem can get almost pinkish-lavender on its way to finishing warm mocha. Miri Talabac,, 30 Sep. 2021 As instructed, Matt chased after her, running flat-out to where the chest-high bluestem hit a mowed field. Alex Robinson, Outdoor Life, 4 Dec. 2020 Charging into the bluestem, Indiangrass and switchgrass that flourishes where corn and soybeans once grew, the two canines scoured the thick cover for pheasants. Star Tribune, 10 Oct. 2020 Allen was once just a prairie field with sideoats grama, and bluestem grass that grew as high as six feet. Alyssa Fernandez, Dallas News, 24 June 2020 One section of the land had lotebush and granjeño shrubs, prickly pear cactuses and bunches of bluestem grass where the lizards like to cool down or hide from predators. Alia Malik,, 27 Apr. 2020 See More

These example sentences are selected automatically from various online news sources to reflect current usage of the word 'bluestem.' Views expressed in the examples do not represent the opinion of Merriam-Webster or its editors. Send us feedback.

First Known Use of bluestem

1818, in the meaning defined at sense 1

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The first known use of bluestem was in 1818

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Last Updated

6 Aug 2022

Cite this Entry

“Bluestem.” Dictionary, Merriam-Webster, Accessed 9 Aug. 2022.

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