Northern Prairie Wildlife Research Center
Northeast Wetland Flora
Field Office Guide to Plant Species
Muhlenbergia sylvatica Torr. ex Gray
- Family: Grass (Gramineae)
- Flowering: July-October
- Field Marks: This muhly differs by its narrow panicles, its finely hairy stems on the upper
one-half of each internode, its lemmas hairy at the base, and its narrowly lanceolate, silvery or
- Habitat: Rocky woods, stream banks.
- Habit: Perennial herb from scaly rhizomes.
- Stems: Upright, branched or unbranched, up to 3 feet tall, finely hairy, especially on the
upper one-half of each internode.
- Leaves: Elongated, flat, up to 1/3 inch wide, more or less smooth; sheaths smooth except
for the often finely hairy base.
- Flowers: Many borne in narrow panicles up to 9 inches long, upright to drooping; spikelets
1-flowered, up to 1/6 inch long.
- Glumes: Narrowly lanceolate, one slightly shorter than the other, pointed at the tip, silvery
or whitish, up to 1/8 inch long.
- Lemmas: Narrowed to the tip, up to 1/6 inch long, hairy at the base, with an awn up to
3/4 inch long, or awnless.
- Sepals: 0.
- Petals: 0.
- Stamens: 3.
- Pistils: Ovary superior, smooth.
- Fruits: Grains ellipsoid, smooth, about 1/12 inch long, nearly free from the lemmas.
- Notes: Gleason and Cronquist call this family Poaceae.
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