Nolina microcarpa  Beargrass, Sacahuista
SUCCULENT.  Not a grass, but closely related to Dasylirion and Yucca.  A knobby rootstock produces sprays of narrow, flexible, shiny green leaves tipped with long white shreddy plumes.  Leaves are crescent-shaped in cross-section.  Spikes of tiny white flowers appear in May-June, followed by tiny seeds in papery husks.  Seeds are slightly flattened and less than 2 mm in diameter.  Common in the Empires in desert grassland and occasionally along washes in desertscrub.  Empire Mts. plants tend to have shorter flowerstalks than is typical, and the dead leaf tips may be split instead of plumed (see left photo).  A few plants growing on limestone, such as the one in the right photo, have more in common with N. texana than N. microcarpa.  They have narrower leaves that are triangular in cross-section and smooth-edged leaves with split tips (not plumed).  Seeds are spherical and about 3 mm in diameter.  N. texana is a Texas species, common on limestone on the Edwards Plateau, but it is not well documented from southern Arizona.  N. microcarpa is the common Arizona species and does not usually grow in Texas.  More careful study of Nolina in the Empire Mountains might clarify the range of the two species and the relationship between them.
FAMILY:  Agavaceae (Agave Family)