Northern Prairie Wildlife Research Center
Northeast Wetland Flora
Field Office Guide to Plant Species
Dactylis glomerata L.
- Family: Grass (Gramineae)
- Flowering: May-July
- Field Marks: This grass is distinguished by its many-flowered spikelets and pointed lemmas
that are ciliate along the keel. The spikelets are crowded in 1-sided panicles.
- Habitat: Disturbed areas, fields, roadsides, meadows.
- Habit: Perennial herb with fibrous roots.
- Stems: Upright, up to 4 feet tall, usually slightly rough to the touch.
- Leaves: Elongated, flat, 1/10-1/3 inch wide, rough to the touch; ligules membranous, 1/4-1/3
- Flowers: Borne in spikelets arranged in 1-sided panicles 2 1/2-8 inches long; spikelets 3- to
6-flowered, crowded; glumes pointed and unequal in length; lemmas pointed, ciliate along the
keel, awnless or with an awn up to 1/10 inch long.
- Sepals: 0.
- Petals: 0.
- Stamens: 3.
- Pistils: Ovary superior, smooth.
- Fruits: Ellipsoid, smooth.
- Notes: This family is Poaceae according to Gleason and Cronquist. This species is
sometimes cultivated as a pasture grass or for hay. This is a European introduction that is
now widely naturalized.
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