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

Hesperostipa curtiseta (Hitchc.) Barkworth
short-awned porcupinegrass (shortbristle needle and thread)
Poaceae (Grass family)

Introduction to Vascular Plants

© Jamie Fenneman  Email the photographer   (Photo ID #17163)

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Distribution of Hesperostipa curtiseta
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Species Information

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Perennial, tufted grass from fibrous roots; stems 24-65 cm tall; lower nodes usually smooth, sometimes evenly hairy but not with lines of hairs, nodes sometimes concealed by the lower sheaths.
Lower sheaths smooth; blades 1.3-3 mm wide; lower ligules 0.2-1 mm long, stiff, blunt or rounded, highest at the sides; upper ligules to 3.5 mm long, blunt to rounded.
Inflorescence a loose, but narrow panicle, 6-24 cm long; glumes unequal, 15-30 mm long; lemmas mostly smooth, but the base and margins with brown hairs, 8.5-14 mm long, awned, the awns twice bent, 50-105 mm long, rough throughout, the tips straight; calluses 3-5 mm long.

Source: The Illustrated Flora of British Columbia

Habitat / Range

Dry, open grassy slopes in the steppe and montane zones; frequent in SC and SE BC; N to NT, E to MB and S to SD and WY.

Source: The Illustrated Flora of British Columbia


Ecological Framework for Hesperostipa curtiseta

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) 469 918 1210
Slope Gradient (%) 0 10 95
Aspect (degrees)
[0 - N; 90 - E; 180 - S; 270 - W]
3 284 360
Soil Moisture Regime (SMR)
[0 - very xeric; 4 - mesic;
8 - hydric]
2 3 5
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: BG(33), IDF(101), PP(7)


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

Stipa curtiseta (Hitchc.) Barkworth
Stipa spartea var. curtiseta Hitchc.

Taxonomic and Nomenclatural Links

Additional Photo Sources

General References