Perennial tufted grass from fibrous roots; stems 40-175 cm tall.
Sheaths open, smooth to densely hairy, the margins sometimes with a fringe of hairs; blades (0.5) 1.2-5 mm wide; lower ligules 0.2-0.7 mm long, thin and flexible, blunt to rounded, usually without hairs along the margins; upper ligules up to 1.5 mm long, pointed.
Inflorescence a narrow panicle, 9-36 cm long, the branches straight, appressed to ascending, the spikelets appressed to the branches; florets not flattened; glumes 6-12.5 mm long, smooth; lemmas 6-7.5 mm long, smooth above, short-hairy below, the hairs 0.2-0.5 mm long, the tips minutely lobed, membranous, 0.1-0.4 mm long, awned, the awns 19-31 mm long, the first segments rough or short-hairy, persistent; paleas 2-4 mm long, 1/3-1/2 as long as the lemmas, the calluses 0.2-1 mm long, blunt, the smooth areas barely extending beyond the base of the callus hairs.
If more than one illustration is available for a species (e.g., separate illustrations were provided for two subspecies) then links to the separate images will be provided below. Note that individual subspecies or varietal illustrations are not always available.
Illustration Source: The Illustrated Flora of British Columbia
Present over the Summer
Source: The USDA
||Value / Class
Moisture Regime (SMR)
[0 - very xeric; 4 - mesic;
8 - hydric]
of field plots
species was recorded in:
BEC Zone Class
All BEC Zones (# of stations/zone) species was recorded in
|BG(3), BWBS(4), ESSF(1), ICH(1), IDF(12), PP(9)|
Source: Klinkenberg 2013
Synonyms and Alternate Names:
Achnatherum nelsonii var. dorei (Barkworth & Maze) Dorn
Stipa columbiana auct. non Macoun
Stipa minor (Vasey) Scribn.
Stipa nelsonii subsp. dorei Barkworth & Maze
Stipa nelsonii var. dorei (Barkworth & Maze) Dorn
Stipa occidentalis var. minor sensu C.L. Hitchc., non (Vasey) C.L. Hitchc.