E-Flora BC: Electronic Atlas of the Flora of British Columbia

Deschampsia danthonioides (Trin.) Munro
annual hairgrass
Poaceae (Grass family)

Introduction to Vascular Plants

© Bryan Kelly-McArthur  Email the photographer   (Photo ID #70417)

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Distribution of Deschampsia danthonioides
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Species Information

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Annual, simple to somewhat tufted grass from fibrous roots, smooth; stems 5-50 cm tall.
Sheaths open; leaves mostly basal; blades threadlike, usually in-rolled, smooth to rough below, barely 1 (1.5) mm wide; ligules entire, hairy, sharp- to long-pointed, (1) 3-6 mm long.
Inflorescence a narrow to widely spreading panicle, up to 25 cm long, sometimes reduced to a simple raceme; glumes 3-nerved, smooth to more or less rough, long-pointed, usually slightly exceeding the upper florets, the lower glumes 1-nerved, usually slightly longer than the upper glumes, 5-8 mm long; rachilla joints with hairs about as long as the calluses; lemmas firm, 5-nerved, smooth, shining, often purplish, about 2.5 mm long, the tips blunt, jagged and more or less fringed with fine hairs, awned from below midlength, the awns abruptly bent, about 5 mm long, the calluses strongly stiff-hairy about 1 mm long; paleas nearly equal to the lemmas; lodicules lanceolate, 0.2-0.3 mm long; anthers 0.3-0.5 mm long.

Source: The Illustrated Flora of British Columbia

USDA Species Characteristics

Flower Colour:
Blooming Period:
Mid Spring
Fruit/Seed characteristics:
Colour: Brown
Present from Spring to Summer
Source:  The USDA

Habitat / Range

Dry to mesic roadsides, slopes, rock outcrops and moist vernal pools in the lowland and montane zones; infrequent in S BC; N to AK and YT, E to SW AB and S to NM, AZ, MX and CA; Chile.

Source: The Illustrated Flora of British Columbia


Ecological Framework for Deschampsia danthonioides

The table below shows the species-specific information calculated from
original data (BEC database) provided by the BC Ministry of Forests and Range.
(Updated August, 2013)

Site Information
Value / Class




Elevation (metres) 599 599 599
Slope Gradient (%) 22 22 22
Aspect (degrees)
[0 - N; 90 - E; 180 - S; 270 - W]
3 3 3
Soil Moisture Regime (SMR)
[0 - very xeric; 4 - mesic;
8 - hydric]
7 7 7
Modal Nutrient Regime
Number of field plots
 species was recorded in:
Modal BEC Zone Class
All BEC Zones (# of stations/zone) species was recorded in: ICH(1)


The climate type for this species, as reported in the: "British Columbia plant species codes and selected attributes. Version 6 Database" (Meidinger et al. 2008), is not evaluated, unknown or variable.

Synonyms and Alternate Names

Aira danthonioides Trin.
Deschampsia calycina J. Presl
Deschampsia danthonioides var. gracilis (Vasey) Munz

Taxonomic and Nomenclatural Links

Additional Photo Sources

General References