Common name: Tall Fescue
Festuca arundinacea Schreb. APNI*
Synonyms: Festuca elatior var. arundinacea Hack. APNI*
Description: Tufted perennials, sometimes tussock-forming, without rhizomes, to c. 1.2 m tall.
Culms erect smooth, glabrous; nodes 2–4, glabrous. Sheaths tightly enclosing culm, becoming loose with age; ligule membranous, to 1 mm long, truncate; auricles narrow, margin with rigid hairs c. 0.25 mm long or pilose with hairs to 0.5 mm long; blade flat, rolled when dry, 8–50 cm long, to 1 cm wide.
Inflorescence paniculate, open, 13–3 cm long, to 6 cm wide, rachis smooth, occasionally scabrous, glabrous. Spikelets 10–17 mm long, to 8 mm wide, florets 4–8, uppermost floret often ruduced; pedicels 1–5 mm long, scabrous, glabrous. Glumes unequal, acute, awnless, membranous, smooth, glabrous; lower lanceolate, 3–6 mm long; upper glume lanceolate to oblong, 5–7 mm long. Lemmas lanceolate, 5.5–9.5 mm long, acute, or mucronate, or awned, rounded on back, upper 50% often keeled, central nerve often lightly scabrous, upper margin mambranous, smooth, glabrous, awn terminal or subterminal, straight, to 2.5 mm long, scabrous; callus glabrous; palea subequal to lemma, acute or 2-toothed, 2-keeled, keels lightly scabrous, glabrous.
Distribution and occurrence:
NSW subdivisions: *NC, *CC, *SC, *NT, *CT, *ST
Other Australian states: Vic. S.A. W.A.
Widely planted as a lawn and pasture grass.
Text by Jacobs, S.W.L., Whalley, R.D.B. & Wheeler, D.J.B.
Taxon concept: Grasses of New South Wales, Fourth Edition (2008).
APNI* Provides a link to the Australian Plant Name Index (hosted by the Australian National Botanic Gardens) for comprehensive bibliographic data
***The AVH map option provides a detailed interactive Australia wide distribution map drawn from collections held by all major Australian herbaria participating in the Australian Virtual Herbarium project.