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Leersia oryzoides (rice cutgrass) Leersia oryzoides (rice cutgrass)
Image courtesy of ©2020 Kind Earth Growers
Species Distribution Map
Map Color Key © 2013 BONAP

Leersia oryzoides

rice cutgrass

Leersia oryzoides, rice cut grass, is a rhizomatous perennial grass growing from 2-4' tall. The leaves of rice cut grass form a very rough minutely toothed edge that makes it unpalatable to many herbivore mammals. The inflorescence of Rice cut grass is a somewhat loose, open array of hair like branches bearing single rows of small spikelets. Habitats include marshes, sandy areas, gravel seeps, swamps, prairie type swales, low-lying areas along rivers and ponds, and stormwater drainage ditches including degraded wetlands. Seeds provide excellent food source for waterfowl. - Kind Earth Growers

Erosion control
Wetland Indicator Status: OBL
Don't walk through in bare legs and feet

Rice cutgrass is a native cool-season, rhizomotous grass - perfect for bank stabilization and erosion control for wildlife habitat and restoration projects.

Leersia oryzoides LP50 - 50 per flat Availability
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2-4 Feet


1-2 Feet

Bloom Color


USDA Hardiness Zone 3-9

rice cutgrass Interesting Notes

Rice cutgrass is valuable for wildlife habitat improvement, wetland restoration, and erosion control in ditches and other watercourses. The seeds are an important food source for waterfowl, small mammals, and shorebirds. Ducks pull up and consume underground stems (rhizomes). Dense colonies provide cover and habitat for fish, reptiles, and amphibians. The forage produced is highly palatable. This plant’s creeping rhizomes and spreading habit are good for sediment stabilization along the immediate shorelines of streams and lakes. - USDA

Leersia oryzoides Growing and Maintenance Tips

Grass prefers full sun in wet to moist conditions in fertile soil that is "mucky" or silty. Though it can tolerate gravelly and sandy soils and less sun - it thrives in disturbed wetland areas. It can tolerate very acidic conditions (pH around 3).

Spread by seed and rhizome to form colonies over time. 

Key Characteristics & Attributes

Full Sun
Full Sun
Full Shade
Full Shade
Part Sun
Part Sun
Deer Resistant
Deer Resistant
Drought Tolerant
Drought Tolerant

Additional Information

Soil Moisture Needs
Plug Type
Landscape Plug™
Green Infrastructure
Native to North America
Propagation Type
Open pollinated
Grass Type
Cool Season