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

Sphenopholis intermedia (Rydb.) Rydb.
slender wedgegrass (slender wedgescale)
Poaceae (Grass family)

Introduction to Vascular Plants

© Mike Russum  Email the photographer   (Photo ID #65711)

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Distribution of Sphenopholis intermedia
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Slender wedgegrass occurs primarily in eastern BC. However, it has been collected in the Fraser Valley. Lomer (2011) provides this discussion:

"Collected from dredged sand in Surrey, east of Vancouver (UBC: Lomer 93-73). This grass is known from the Thompson River, as well as other sites in BC, so seeds were probably washed down into the Fraser and sprouted in the dredging. In 2010 a single plant was observed on the sandy meadow shore of an island in the Fraser River southwest of Agassiz. So it appears this species can arise naturally from material washed down the Fraser River from interior sites, thus it should be considered native [in the valley]." (Reprinted with permission from Botanical Electronic News # 438.)

Species Information

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Perennial, tufted, short-lived grass from fibrous roots, sometimes flowering as a winter annual; stems 30-110 cm tall.
Sheaths open; blades flat, 2-5 mm wide, minutely rough; ligules smooth or rarely minutely rough externally, finely jagged and irregularly toothed, 1.5-2.5 mm long.
Inflorescence a distinctly open, narrow panicle, (2) 7-20 cm long, the branches crowded, erect, plainly distinguishable within the inflorescence; spikelets 2-flowered, lower glumes narrowly linear, 1.6-2.5 mm long, the upper ones oblanceolate, rounded to nearly sharp-pointed, 2.2-2.5 mm long, about 2 to 3 times as wide as the lower; lemmas 2.5-3 mm long; anthers about 0.6 mm long.

Source: The Illustrated Flora of British Columbia

Habitat / Range

Moist meadows and streambanks, shallow ponds and hot springs in the steppe and montane zones; rare in SC, SE and NE BC; N to AK, YT and NT, E to NF and S to ME, MA, PA, NC, FL, MS, LA, TX, NM, AZ and CA.

Source: The Illustrated Flora of British Columbia


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

Sphenopholis intermedia var. pilosa Dore
Sphenopholis obtusata var. major (Torr.) K.S. Erdman

Taxonomic and Nomenclatural Links

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General References