General: Annual, tufted, smooth or more or less rough short-hairy grass from fibrous roots; stems 1 to several, slender, delicate, hollow, 2-12 (20) cm tall.
Leaves: Sheaths open; blades scarcely 0.5 mm wide, threadlike, in-rolled; ligules 1-3 mm long, pointed to blunt, slightly jagged tips.
Flowers: Inflorescence a compact, congested and almost continuous, more or less spikelike panicle, mostly 1-3 cm long, the branches erect; spikelet stalks shorter than the spikelets; glumes (2.7) 3-3.2 (3.5) mm long; lemmas (2.5) 3-3.2 (3.5) mm long, usually lightly rough short-hairy, awned, the awns 2-3 mm long; anthers about 0.2 mm long.
Vernally moist to dry gravelly or rocky bluffs and grassy meadows; common on S Vancouver Island, the Gulf Islands and lower mainland, infrequent N to the Queen Charlotte Islands; introduced from Europe.
Very shade-intolerant, submontane to montane, European grasses introduced to Pacific and Atlantic North America. Both Aira caryophyllea and Aira praecox occur in maritime to su maritime summerdry cool mesothermal climates on very dry to moderately dry soils, and, A. praecox, on nitrogen-poor soils. Scattered in the open and open-canopy coniferous forests on very shallow and strongly drained soils of rock outcrops. Characteristic of moisture-deficient sites.
Recommended citation: Author, Date. Page title. In Klinkenberg, Brian. (Editor) 2020. E-Flora BC:
Electronic Atlas of the Plants of British Columbia [eflora.bc.ca]. Lab for
Advanced Spatial Analysis, Department of Geography, University of British
Columbia, Vancouver. [Accessed:
2020-08-03 11:16:50 AM
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