Alopecurus pratensis L.
meadow-foxtail (meadow foxtail; meadow meadow-foxtail)
Poaceae (Grass family)

Introduction to Vascular Plants


© Jamie Fenneman     (Photo ID #6630)


E-Flora BC Static Map

Distribution of Alopecurus pratensis
Click here to view the full interactive map and legend

Species Information

Perennial, tufted grass from fibrous roots; stems erect or decumbent, sometimes rooting at the lowest nodes, 30-90 (110) cm long/tall.
Sheaths open; blades flat, rough, mostly 3-10 mm wide; ligules of the lower leaves nearly entire, blunt, 1.5-2 mm long, those of the upper leaves finely jagged with fine hairs, sometimes more or less jagged, blunt to rounded, up to 6 mm long.
Inflorescence a cylindrical panicle, 3-10 cm long, the ends slightly tapered but not sharp-pointed (rounded); spikelets often over 4.5 mm long (excluding awns); glumes with the nerves and keels fringed with long, fine hairs, sharp-pointed, (4) 5 (6) mm long; lemmas smooth or hairy on the keels above, the margins fused for 1 mm or less, subequal to the glumes, sharp-pointed, awned, the awns inserted at about 1 mm above the base, abruptly bent, exserted 2-5 mm beyond the glumes; anthers 2.3-3.5 mm long.

SourceThe Illustrated Flora of British Columbia


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.

USDA Species Characteristics

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


Ecological Framework for Alopecurus pratensis

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)
1033 950 1116
Slope Gradient (%)
2 0 5

Aspect (degrees)
[0 - N; 90 - E; 180 - S; 270 - W]

234 234 234
Soil Moisture Regime (SMR)
[0 - very xeric; 4 - mesic;
8 - hydric]
5 4 6
Modal Nutrient Regime
# of field plots
 species was recorded in:
Modal BEC Zone Class

All BEC Zones (# of stations/zone) species was recorded in

IDF(1), SBPS(1)

Habitat and Range

Wet to mesic meadows, fallow fields, and roadsides; infrequent in the lowland, steppe and montane zones in SC and SW BC; introduced from Eurasia.

SourceThe Illustrated Flora of British Columbia