Northern Prairie Wildlife Research Center
Western Wetland Flora
Field Office Guide to Plant Species
Phleum pretense L.
- Family: Grass (Gramineae)
- Flowering: June-September
- Field Marks: This grass is readily recognized by its slender, cylindrical spikes, its conspicuous jagged-tipped ligules, and its awned, ciliate glumes.
- Habitat: Along streams, moist woods, meadows, disturbed areas.
- Habit: Tufted perennial grass with fibrous roots.
- Stems: Upright, unbranched, hollow, somewhat swollen at the base, up to 4 1/2 feet tall, without hairs.
- Leaves: Elongated, flat, up to 1/3 inch wide, rough along the edges; ligules up to 1/4 inch long, jagged at the tip.
- Flowers: Many 1-flowered spikelets crowded into a continuous cylindrical spike up to 6 inches long and less than 1/2 inch wide; spikelets elliptic, up to 1/8 inch long; glumes awned and with cilia; lemma minutely hairy.
- Sepals: 0.
- Petals: 0.
- Stamens: 3.
- Pistils: Ovary superior, smooth.
- Grains: Ellipsoid, smooth.
- Notes: This is a valuable grass for hay and for foraging by cattle. It is native of Europe, but has been extensively cultivated in the United States.
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