BROOMSEDGE, Andropogon virginicus
L. 1, stems and root system; 2, part of inflorescence; 3,
single spikelet and rachis segment. Perennial, growing in small
erect clumps or bunches, reddish-brown when dry. Roots densely fibrous.
Stems several in a tuft, slightly flattened, 1 to 3 feet (30 to
90 cm) tall, upper part branched. Leaves 6 to 12 inches (15 to 30
cm) long, flat or folded, very hairy on upper surface where attached to
stem. Panicle consists of 2 to 4 fingerlike clusters, each 3/4 to
1-1/2 inches (1.9 to 3.8 cm) long, bearing tufts of conspicuous white hairs,
enclosed by reddish-brown leaves. Seeds about 1/8 inch (3 mm) long,
brown, bearded. Found mostly on poor run-down pastures and open
meadows. A serious problem in pastures on marginal lands, it disappears
under fertilization and adequate grazing.