Northern Prairie Wildlife Research Center
Northeast Wetland Flora
Field Office Guide to Plant Species
Poa sylvestris Gray
- Family: Grass (Gramineae)
- Flowering: April-June
- Field Marks: The distinguishing features of this bluegrass are the cobwebby hairs on the
lemmas, the 5-nerved lemmas, and the absence of rhizomes. In addition to the cobwebby
hairs, the veins of the lemmas are finely hairy.
- Habitat: Rich woods.
- Habit: Tufted perennial with fibrous roots.
- Stems: Upright, unbranched, up to 3 feet tall, smooth.
- Leaves: Elongated, flat, soft, up to 1/4 inch wide; sheaths smooth, or the lowest somewhat
- Flowers: Borne in spikelets, the spikelets arranged in open, spreading or reflexed panicles
up to 8 inches long; spikelets 2- to 5-flowered, up to 1/5 inch long.
- Glumes: Lanceolate to ovate, pointed at the tip, smooth, the first glume 1-nerved, the
second glume 3-nerved, up to 1/6 inch long.
- Lemmas: Broadly lanceolate, rounded to obscurely pointed at the tip, 5-nerved, hairy on
the veins, with a tuft of hairs at the base, up to 1/6 inch long.
- Sepals: 0.
- Petals: 0.
- Stamens: 3.
- Pistils: Ovary superior.
- Fruits: Grains ellipsoid, smooth.
- Notes: The seeds are eaten by wildlife. Gleason and Cronquist call this family Poaceae.
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