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Common (vernacular) names applied to California vascular plants

compiled by Elizabeth Painter

up to date as of May 1, 2016

Common names (also referred to as vernacular names) are applied differently at different times and places by different users. This list is compiled from many sources and is intended to be as comprehensive as possible. It is not intended to indicate which common name is correct or preferred. Please send comments about this page to Elizabeth Painter (

TaxonElymus elymoides var. californicus
Family common name(s)grass; true grass
Genus common name(s)elymus; buffalo rye; long-awned wild rye; long-awn wild rye
Species common name(s)bottle-brush squirrel-tail; bottle brush squirrel tail; bottle-brush squirreltail; bottle brush squirreltail; bottlebrush squirrel-tail; bottlebrush squirrel tail; bottlebrush squirreltail; common squirrel-tail; common squirrel tail; common squirreltail; western squirreltai; western squirrel-tail grass; western squirrel tail grass; western bottle-brush grass; western bottle brush grass; western bottlebrush grass; long-bristled wild-rye; long-bristled wild rye; long-bristle wild-rye; long-bristle wild rye; bushtail grass; bushtail; orchard barley
Common name(s) generally applied to other taxa or multiple taxawildrye, wild-rye, wild rye, wild rye grass, rye grass, lyme grass, lyme-grass, lymegrass, wheatgrass, wheat-grass, wheat grass, squirreltail, squirrel-tail, squirrel tail, squirreltail grass, squirrel-tail grass, squirrel tail grass, bottle-brush grass, bottlebrush grass, bottlebrushgrass are applied to multiple Poaceae taxa; squirreltail barley, squirrel-tail barley, squirrel tail barley are more commonly applied to Hordeum jubatum; bottle-brush, bottle brush are applied to taxa in multiple families
NotesCalifornia is a proper name, so upper case preferable
Synonymy: The Jepson Manual (1993), FNA, PLANTS, etcsubsp. californicus (J.G. Sm.) Barkworth; Sitanion hystrix (Nutt.) J.G. Sm. var. californicum (J.G. Sm.) F.D. Wilson
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