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Perennial, tufted grass from fibrous roots; stems erect, hollow, sometimes hairy at the nodes, the base frequently enlarged and bulblike, often rooting at the first few nodes, but not truly rhizomatous, mostly 80-150 cm tall.
Sheaths open, usually smooth, sometimes rough; blades flat, 4-8 (10) mm wide, 7-25 cm long, rough and often soft-hairy; ligules 1-2 (3) mm long, membranous, the margins jagged and fringed with small hairs, finely short-hairy, blunt.
Inflorescence a narrow, shining panicle, 10-30 cm long; glumes awnless, the lower glumes mostly 5-7 mm long, the upper ones 7-10 mm long; lemmas 5- to 7-nerved, hairy on the callus, awn of the lower lemmas 10-20 mm long, those of the upper lemmas 4-6 (15) mm long or rarely lacking; paleas about equalling the lemmas; anthers about 4 mm long; lodicules 2.5-3.5 mm long.
Source: The Illustrated Flora of British Columbia