Johnson Grass, Sorghum halepense
Poaceae or Grass Family


A tall grass, up to 8 feet. It spreads through its roots. Leaves alternate on the stem, about 2 feet long, with a very prominent white midvein. Flowers in a large, loose, spreading cluster, reddish to purplish. Blooms in late summer.

Originally from the Mediterranean area, this grass was introduced to the US in the early 1800's as cattle food. Big mistake! Because of its aggressive nature and its ability to survive in wetlands, ditches, old fields, and croplands and because it has spread worldwide, it is considered one of the world's worst weeds. In Wildwood, it may be found along the Riverway in the Great South Meadow.

This is an easy grass to recognize because of its large size, open purplish flower cluster, and the large white midvein.




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