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

Glyceria borealis (Nash) Batchelder
northern mannagrass (small floating mannagrass)
Poaceae (Grass family)

Introduction to Vascular Plants

© Jamie Fenneman  Email the photographer   (Photo ID #10350)

E-Flora BC Static Map
Distribution of Glyceria borealis
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Species Information

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Perennial grass from conspicuous rhizomes, freely rooting; stems erect to more or less decumbent, hollow, 80-150 cm tall/long.
Sheaths somewhat flattened, smooth, open for 1-4 cm; blades (2) 3-5 (6) mm wide, flat or folded, more or less pimpled on the upper surfaces; ligules pointed, entire but usually splitting, minutely hairy, (4) 5-10 mm long.
Inflorescence a narrow panicle, 18-50 cm long, the branches ascending-appressed; spikelets mostly 6- to 11-flowered, linear, tapered at the tips, 10-12 (15) mm long; lower glumes (1.5) 2-2.5 mm long, the upper ones slightly over 3 mm long; lemmas prominently 7-nerved to the narrow, translucent upper margins, 3-4 mm long, smooth, minutely rough on the nerves; stamens 3; anthers 0.5-1 mm long.

Source: The Illustrated Flora of British Columbia

USDA Species Characteristics

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

Habitat / Range

Swamps, lakeshores and wet meadows (often in water up to 1 m deep) in the lowland and montane zones; frequent in SW BC, infrequent in SC BC; N to AK and YT, E to NF and S to ME, MA, PA, IN, IA, SD, NM, AZ and CA.

Source: The Illustrated Flora of British Columbia


Ecological Framework for Glyceria borealis

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) 130 960 1655
Slope Gradient (%) 0 0 14
Aspect (degrees)
[0 - N; 90 - E; 180 - S; 270 - W]
20 106 171
Soil Moisture Regime (SMR)
[0 - very xeric; 4 - mesic;
8 - hydric]
5 7 8
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: CDF(10), CWH(3), ESSF(2), ICH(2), IDF(17), MS(1), PP(1), SBPS(6), SBS(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

Panicularia borealis Nash

Taxonomic and Nomenclatural Links

Additional Photo Sources

General References