USGS - science for a changing world

Northern Prairie Wildlife Research Center

  Home About NPWRC Our Science Staff Employment Contacts Common Questions About the Site

Aquatic and Wetland Vascular Plants of the Northern Great Plains

Alopecurus L. -- Foxtail

Tufted annuals and tufted or rhizomatous perennials with soft, flat leaves and dense, cylindric, spikelike panicles; culms erect or decumbent at the base. Spikelets 1-flowered, strongly compressed, densely crowded in the spikelike panicle, disarticulating below the glumes; glumes equal, laterally compressed, usually united toward the base, 3-nerved, often silky hairy on the back, awnless; lemma about as long as the glumes or shorter, laterally compressed with the margins united toward the base, faintly 3- to 5-nerved, awned from the back, the awn not exserted to exserted well beyond the glume tips; palea absent. Grain olivaceous to grayish-brown, somewhat obovoid, apiculate at both ends, 1-2 mm long.

Lead Characteristic Go To
1 Anthers more than 1.5 mm long; glumes more than 2.5 mm long; lemmas often more than 2.5 mm long. Lead 2
1 Anthers less than 1.5 mm long; glumes usually less than 2.5 mm long; lemmas often less than 2.5 mm long. Lead 3
2 Awns elongate, geniculate, 5-10 mm long, the exserted portion (1)2-6 mm long; plants nonrhizomatous, although some stems tending to root at the lower nodes. A. pratensis
2 Awns shorter, 0.3-2(6) mm long, seldom exserted as much as 2 mm; plants strongly rhizomatous. A. arundinaceus
3 Awn exserted just barely to 1.5 mm beyond the glume tips. A. aequalis
3 Awn exserted 2-4 mm beyond the glume tips. Lead 4
4 Plants annual; anthers ca. 0.5 mm long. A. carolinianus
4 Plants perennial; anthers 0.8-1.5 mm long. A. geniculatus

63. Poaceae, the Grass Family
3. Alopecurus L. -- Foxtail
1. Alopecurus aequalis Sobol. -- Short-awn foxtail
2. Alopecurus arundinaceus Poir. -- Creeping foxtail
3. Alopecurus carolinianus Walt. -- Carolina foxtail
4. Alopecurus geniculatus L. -- Water foxtail
5. Alopecurus pratensis L. -- Meadow foxtail

Return to Family -- Poaceae - The Grass Family
Return to Contents

Accessibility FOIA Privacy Policies and Notices

Take Pride in America logo logo U.S. Department of the Interior | U.S. Geological Survey
Page Contact Information: Webmaster
Page Last Modified: Saturday, 02-Feb-2013 06:37:47 EST
Sioux Falls, SD [sdww55]