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Vascular Plants of California
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Agropyron cristatum subsp. pectinatum

Higher Taxonomy
Family: Poaceae (Gramineae)View DescriptionDichotomous Key
Habit: Annual to woody perennial herb; roots generally fibrous. Stem: generally round, hollow; nodes swollen, solid. Leaf: alternate, 2-ranked, generally linear, parallel-veined; sheath generally open; ligule membranous or hairy, at blade base. Inflorescence: various (of generally many spikelets). Spikelet: glumes generally 2; florets (lemma, palea, flower) 1--many; lemma generally membranous, sometimes glume-like; palea generally +- transparent, +- enclosed by lemma. Flower: generally bisexual, minute; perianth vestigial; stamens generally 3; stigmas generally 2, generally plumose. Fruit: grain, sometimes achene- or utricle-like.
Genera In Family: 650--900 genera; +- 10550 species: worldwide; greatest economic importance of any family (wheat, rice, maize, millet, sorghum, sugar cane, forage crops, ornamental, weeds; thatching, weaving, building materials). Note: Generally wind-pollinated. Achnatherum, Ampelodesmos, Hesperostipa, Nassella, Piptatherum, Piptochaetium, Ptilagrostis moved to Stipa; Elytrigia, Leymus, Pascopyrum, Pseudoroegneria, Taeniatherum to Elymus; Hierochloe to Anthoxanthum; Lolium, Vulpia to Festuca; Lycurus to Muhlenbergia; Monanthochloe to Distichlis; Pleuraphis to Hilaria; Rhynchelytrum to Melinis. The following taxa (in genera not included here), recorded in California from historical collections or reported in literature, are extirpated, lacking vouchers, or not considered naturalized: Acrachne racemosa (Roth) Ohwi, Allolepis texana (Vasey) Soderstr. & H.F. Decker, Amphibromus nervosus (Hook. f.) Baill., Axonopus affinis Chase, Axonopus fissifolius (Raddi) Kuhlm., Coix lacryma-jobi L., Cutandia memphitica (Spreng.) K. Richt., Dinebra retroflexa (Vahl) Panz., Eremochloa ciliaris (L.) Merr., Eustachys distichophylla (Lag.) Nees, Gaudinia fragilis (L.) P. Beauv., Miscanthus sinensis Andersson, Neyraudia arundinacea (L.) Henrard, Phyllostachys aurea Rivière & C. Rivière, Phyllostachys bambusoides Siebold & Zuccarini, Rottboellia cochinchinensis (Lour.) Clayton, Schedonnardus paniculatus (Nutt.) Branner & Coville, Schizachyrium cirratum (Hack.) Wooton & Standl., Schizachyrium scoparium (Michx.) Nash, Themeda quadrivalvis (L.) Kuntze, Thysanolaena latifolia (Hornem.) Honda, Tribolium obliterum (Hemsl.) Renvoize, Zea mays L., Zizania palustris L. var. interior (Fassett) Dore, Zoysia japonica Steud. Paspalum pubiflorum E. Fourn., Paspalum quadrifarium Lam., are now reported for southern California (J Bot Res Inst Texas 4:761--770). See Glossary p. 30 for illustrations of general family characteristics.
eFlora Treatment Author: James P. Smith, Jr., except as noted
Scientific Editor: James P. Smith, Jr., J. Travis Columbus, Dieter H. Wilken.
Genus: AgropyronView Description 

Habit: Perennial herb, generally cespitose. Stem: erect or bent, 2.5--10 dm. Leaf: sheath open, generally appendaged; ligule membranous; blade flat or rolled. Inflorescence: spike-like, axis not breaking apart at maturity; spikelets 1, 2-ranked, strongly overlapping, divergent or spreading. Spikelet: laterally compressed, glumes +- equal, < floret, lanceolate, 1--5-veined, keeled, acute to short-awned; florets 3--8[16]; axis breaking above glumes and between florets; lemma 5--7-veined, keeled, acute to awned; palea +- = lemma; anthers 3, 3--5 mm.
Species In Genus: 12--15 species: Mediterranean, eastern Europe, central Asia. Etymology: (Greek: field wheat, perhaps referring to a weed resembling wheat) Note: Siberian wheat grass, Agropyron fragile (Roth) P. Candargy, has also been reported for California, but is doubtfully naturalized; often used for soil stabilization on range and cropland.
eFlora Treatment Author: James P. Smith, Jr.
Reference: Barkworth 2007 FNANM 24:277--279
Unabridged Reference: Barkworth & Dewey 1985 Amer J Bot 72:767--776
Agropyron cristatum (L.) Gaertn. subsp. pectinatum (M. Bieb.) Tzvelev
Habit: Occasionally rhizomatous. Stem: generally erect. Leaf: blade 3--12(20) cm, 1.5--6 mm wide, glabrous or pubescent. Inflorescence: 1.3--10 cm; internodes generally 1--5 mm, equal or not, glabrous or long-hairy; spikelets diverging at 30--95° angles. Spikelet: 7--16 mm; glumes 3--6 mm, generally 3-veined, generally awned, awns 1.5--3 mm; florets 3--8; lemma 5--9 mm, generally 5-veined, tip acute, generally awned, awn 1--6 mm. Chromosomes: 2n=14,28,42.
Ecology: Disturbed areas, degraded agricultural sites; Elevation: 600--1500 m. Bioregional Distribution: KR, CaRF, n SNH, s SCoRO, SW, GB, DMoj; Distribution Outside California: most of North America; native to Europe, Mediterranean, Asia. Flowering Time: Jun--Aug Note: Used to rejuvenate burned or overgrazed areas.
Synonyms: Agropyron cristatum subsp. desertorum (Fisch. ex Link) Á. Löve; Agropyron desertorum (Fisch. ex Link) Schult.
Jepson eFlora Author: James P. Smith, Jr.
Reference: Barkworth 2007 FNANM 24:277--279
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Botanical illustration including Agropyron cristatum subsp. pectinatum

botanical illustration including Agropyron cristatum subsp. pectinatum


Citation for this treatment: James P. Smith, Jr. 2012, Agropyron cristatum subsp. pectinatum, in Jepson Flora Project (eds.) Jepson eFlora,, accessed on October 18, 2019.

Citation for the whole project: Jepson Flora Project (eds.) 2019, Jepson eFlora,, accessed on October 18, 2019.

Agropyron cristatum subsp. pectinatum
click for enlargement
© 2005 Steve Matson
Agropyron cristatum subsp. pectinatum
click for enlargement
© 2005 Steve Matson
Agropyron cristatum subsp. pectinatum
click for enlargement
© 2005 Steve Matson
Agropyron cristatum subsp. pectinatum
click for enlargement
© 2005 Steve Matson
Agropyron cristatum subsp. pectinatum
click for enlargement
© 2005 Steve Matson
Agropyron cristatum subsp. pectinatum
click for enlargement
© 2005 Steve Matson

More photos of Agropyron cristatum subsp. pectinatum in CalPhotos

Geographic subdivisions for Agropyron cristatum subsp. pectinatum:
KR, CaRF, n SNH, s SCoRO, SW, GB, DMoj
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map of distribution 1
(Note: any qualifiers in the taxon distribution description, such as 'northern', 'southern', 'adjacent' etc., are not reflected in the map above, and in some cases indication of a taxon in a subdivision is based on a single collection or author-verified occurence).


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Data provided by the participants of the  Consortium of California Herbaria.
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All markers link to CCH specimen records. The original determination is shown in the popup window.
Blue markers indicate specimens that map to one of the expected Jepson geographic subdivisions (see left map). Purple markers indicate specimens collected from a garden, greenhouse, or other non-wild location.
Yellow markers indicate records that may provide evidence for eFlora range revision or may have georeferencing or identification issues.

CCH collections by month

Duplicates counted once; synonyms included.
Species do not include records of infraspecific taxa, if there are more than 1 infraspecific taxon in CA.
Blue line denotes eFlora flowering time.