Calling all writers, especially those who wax poetic! If you have a way with words, here's your chance to put pen to paper and try your hand at writing an award-winning piece for us. Find all the details on our contest page.

Chaparral Beargrass, Chaparral Bear Grass, Chaparral Nolina, Beargrass, Bear Grass

Nolina micrantha

Family: Asparagaceae
Genus: Nolina (no-LEE-na) (Info)
Species: micrantha (my-KRANTH-uh) (Info)


Alpines and Rock Gardens



Foliage Color:


Bloom Characteristics:

Unknown - Tell us

Water Requirements:

Drought-tolerant; suitable for xeriscaping

Where to Grow:

Unknown - Tell us


24-36 in. (60-90 cm)

36-48 in. (90-120 cm)


24-36 in. (60-90 cm)

36-48 in. (90-120 cm)


USDA Zone 8a: to -12.2 C (10 F)

USDA Zone 8b: to -9.4 C (15 F)

USDA Zone 9a: to -6.6 C (20 F)

USDA Zone 9b: to -3.8 C (25 F)

USDA Zone 10a: to -1.1 C (30 F)

USDA Zone 10b: to 1.7 C (35 F)

Sun Exposure:

Sun to Partial Shade

Light Shade


Parts of plant are poisonous if ingested

Bloom Color:



Bloom Time:

Late Spring/Early Summer

Mid Summer


Grown for foliage



Provides winter interest

This plant is resistant to deer

Other details:

Unknown - Tell us

Soil pH requirements:

6.6 to 7.5 (neutral)

7.6 to 7.8 (mildly alkaline)

7.9 to 8.5 (alkaline)

Patent Information:


Propagation Methods:

By dividing the rootball

From seed; direct sow after last frost

Seed Collecting:

Allow pods to dry on plant; break open to collect seeds


This plant has been said to grow in the following regions:

Shawnee Mission, Kansas

San Antonio, Texas

Gardeners' Notes:


On Apr 23, 2010, kman_blue from (Zone 6b) wrote:

Actually, Nolina micrantha is mostly native to Eastern New Mexico and only found in a relatively small area of Texas just East of El Paso mostly in the Southern end of the Guadalupe Mountains which just barely cross the border from New Mexico. About 95% of its native range is in New Mexico and it is common in and around Carlsbad on up through Roswell and up to Santa Rosa and over to Tucumcari. US 285 in New Mexico runs through a good portion of its native range and it's easily observed along the highway as it is the most common Nolina species in most of those areas. It makes a great tough as nails xeriscape landscape plant and can take quite a bit of cold in the winter provided it is planted in very good draining soil. No problems in zone 6 winters. And obviously it can take a lot of heat ... read more


On Oct 6, 2005, htop from San Antonio, TX (Zone 8b) wrote:

Chaparral Beargrass (Nolina micrantha) is a native plant endemic to Texas and can be found in the Trans-Pecos and Erwards Plateau Regions in well drained soils. Resembling a rounded clump of coarse-bladed grass, its numerous leaves are nearly semi-cylindrical with each blade having a lengthwise channel or groove. They have slightly rough feeling margins and are 30 to 50 inches long and less than half an inch wide. It can be distinguished from Nolina texana because it has a purplish to reddish toned inflorescence; whereas, Nolina texana has a white to greenish white inflorescence (can have light purplish tones). Nolina micrantha is also less full (less robust) then Nolina texana.

The plant should be kept as dry as possible during the winter and all of the old and brown par... read more