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Northern Prairie Wildlife Research Center

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Aquatic and Wetland Vascular Plants of the Northern Great Plains

Calamagrostis Adans. -- Reedgrass

Perennials of moderate to tall stature, tufted from rhizomes; leaves green or glaucous, scabrous; sheaths mostly not overlapping, glabrous; ligule prominent, membranous, elongate, usually lacerate, 3-6 mm long. Panicles loose and open or dense and contracted, the branches spreading or ascending, scabrous. Spikelets 1-flowered, often purplish, disarticulating above the glumes; glumes subequal, the first shorter than the second or occasionally vice versa, lanceolate, acute to acuminate, the first glume 1-nerved, the second 3-nerved; lemma shorter and more delicate than the glumes, lanceolate, cleft or erose at the narrowed tip, 5-nerved, awned from the back, the awn diverging from near or below the middle of the back, nearly reaching to slightly exceeding the tip of the lemma, the base of the lemma (callus) bearded with a tuft of copious hairs, these shorter than to equaling the lemma; palea shorter than the lemma, membranous and appearing nerveless. Grain brown, ellipsoid, 1-1.5 mm long.

Lead Characteristic Go To
1 Panicle rather loose and open, the branches ascending to spreading; leaves rather lax, flat, 2-6 mm wide. C. canadensis
1 Panicle contracted, dense or interrupted, the branches short, ascending to appressed; leaves stiff, often involute, 1-4 mm wide when flat. C. stricta

63. Poaceae, the Grass Family
6. Calamagrostis Adans. -- Reedgrass
1. Calamagrostis canadensis (Michx.) Beauv. -- Bluejoint reedgrass
2. Calamagrostis stricta (Timm) Koel. -- Northern reedgrass

Return to Family -- Poaceae - The Grass Family
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