Bluebunch Wheatgrass

Bluebunch wheatgrass
Scientific classification
Kingdom: Plantae
(unranked): Angiosperms
(unranked): Monocots
(unranked): Commelinids
Order: Poales
Family: Poaceae
Genus: Pseudoroegneria
Species: P. spicata
Binomial name
Pseudoroegneria spicata
(Pursh) Á.Löve
Synonyms

Agropyron spicatum
Elymus spicatus

Pseudoroegneria spicata is a species of grass known by the common name Bluebunch Wheatgrass. This native western North American perennial bunchgrass is known by the scientific synonyms Elymus spicatus and Agropyron spicatum. The grass can be found from Alaska to Texas.[1] It occurs in many types of habitat, including sagebrush, forests, woodlands, and grasslands. It is a dominant grass in some habitat types.

Description

Bluebunch wheatgrass can often be distinguished from other bunchgrasses by the awns on its seedheads which stand out at an angle nearly 90 degrees from the stem. It is often bluish in color. The roots of the grass have a waxy layer that helps it resist desiccation in dry soils.[1] In areas with more moisture the grass may produce rhizomes.[1]

Uses

It is an important forage grass for both livestock and native wildlife in western North America.[1] It is widely used for revegetation of degraded habitat in the region, and cultivars have been developed.[2]

State grass

It is the state grass of Montana, Washington, and Iowa.

The grass is easily outcompeted by noxious weeds such as diffuse knapweed (Centaurea diffusa) and medusahead (Taeniatherum caput-medusae).[1]

References

External links

  • USDA Plants Profile
  • Washington Burke Museum
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