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

Setaria pumila (Poir.) Roem. & Schult.
Yellow Foxtail (Wood Groundsel)
Poaceae (Grass family)

Introduction to Vascular Plants

© Vince Bando  Email the photographer   (Photo ID #31301)

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Distribution of Setaria pumila
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Setaria pumila ssp. pumila

Species Information

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Annual grass from fibrous roots, basally branching; stems decumbent to erect, up to 100 cm tall.
Sheaths keeled, smooth; blades flat to folded, 4-11 mm wide, more or less pimpled or soft-hairy on the upper surfaces near the base, the hairs 2-4 mm long; ligules with the membranous basal portions about as long as the fringes, scarcely 1 mm long.
Inflorescence a cylindrical panicle, mostly 4-10 cm long, about 1 cm wide when pressed; spikelets 2-flowered, 3-3.6 mm long, each subtended by (4) 5 or 6 (20), stiff short, yellow bristles that are up to 3 times as long as the spikelet, the bristles directed upwards; lower glumes 3-nerved, 1/3 the length of the spikelets, the upper ones 5-nerved, 2/3 as long; lower flowers male or sterile, the upper fertile, the lower flowers with lemmas that include well-developed paleas just as long; fertile lemmas finely but distinctly cross-wrinkled.

Source: The Illustrated Flora of British Columbia

USDA Species Characteristics

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

Habitat / Range

Mesic to dry fields, roadsides and waste areas in the lowland, steppe and montane zones; infrequent in SW and SC BC; introduced from Eurasia.

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.

Taxonomic and Nomenclatural Links

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General References