Plants annual. Culms 20-60 cm, erect or geniculately ascending. Lower sheaths densely pilose; ligules 1-1.5 mm, hairy, obtuse, erose,
ciliolate; blades 5-15 cm long, 4-6
mm wide, densely pilose on both surfaces. Panicles
7-20 cm long, 4-8 cm wide, racemose, open, nodding, often with few spikelets,
usually secund; branches sometimes
longer than the spikelets, ascending-spreading, flexuous, slightly curved,
usually with 1 spikelet.Spikelets 15-70 mm, broadly oblong or
ovate-lanceolate, terete to moderately laterally compressed; florets 8-30, bases concealed at
maturity; rachilla internodes
concealed at maturity. Glumes smooth, scabrous, or densely hairy, hairs to 0.8 mm; lower glumes 4.5-7 mm,
3-5(7)-veined; upper glumes 6-8 mm,
7-veined; lemmas 8-11 mm long, 2-2.4
mm wide, lanceolate, chartaceous, smooth, scabridulous, or densely hairy with hairs up to 0.8 mm long, 7-9-veined, rounded
over the midvein, margins hyaline, 0.6-0.9 mm wide, strongly angled above the
middle, not inrolled at maturity, apices acute, bifid, teeth shorter than 1 mm;
awns 8-10 mm, flattened and
sometimes twisted at the base, divaricate at maturity, arising 1.5 mm or more below
the lemma apices; anthers 1-1.3 mm. Caryopses equaling the paleas, thin,
weakly inrolled or flat. 2n = 14.
Annual 2-6 dm; culms glabrous; sheaths and blades softly villous, the latter 3-6 mm wide; ligule 1-2 mm; infl to 20 cm, very lax, tending to be secund, subracemose and often with few spikelets, these broadly oblong or broadly lance-ovate, 22-34 נ6-10 mm, somewhat compressed, 8-30-fld, glabrous or occasionally hairy, often longer than their pedicels; glumes broad, obtuse or acutish, several-veined, the first 4.5-7 mm, the second 6-9 mm; lemmas 8-11 mm, several-veined, at least the larger ones 2.5-3.5 mm wide in side view and with a prominently angled shoulder near the middle of the broadly hyaline-scarious margin, the terminal teeth mostly 2-3 mm; awns of the upper lemmas 5-12 mm, usually divergent, those of the lower lemmas often shorter; palea evidently shorter than the lemma; anthers 1-1.2 mm; 2n=14. Native of Europe, occasionally intr. in waste places in our range.
Gleason, Henry A. & Cronquist, Arthur J. 1991. Manual of vascular plants of northeastern United States and adjacent Canada. lxxv + 910 pp.