Common name: Meadow Fescue
Festuca pratensis Huds. APNI*
Synonyms: Festuca elatior L. APNI*
Description: Shorted-lived caespitose perennial to 1.4 m high.
Leaves with ligule membranous, to 1.5 mm long, obtuse; auricles, if present, membranous, narrow, spreading, glabrous; blade flat or rolled, to 5 mm wide, smooth, glabrous.
Inflorescence paniculate, open, 10–25 cm long, to 3 cm wide, erect or nodding. Spikelets 9–14 mm long, 3–6 mm wide, florets 4–7, uppermost floret often reduced; pedicels 0.5–9 mm long, scabrous, glabrous. Glumes unequal, acute, awnless, membranous, scabrous, glabrous; lower 3–4 mm long; upper 4–6 mm long. Lemmas 4–9 mm long, acute, awned or awnless, round on back, upper margins membranous, smooth, glabrous; awn, if present, terminal, straight, slender, to 2.5 mm long; callus glabrous. Palea subequal to lemma, acute, 2-keeled.
Distribution and occurrence: Planted as pasture grass. Native of Eur. & Asia.
NSW subdivisions: *NC, *CC, *SC, *NT, *CT, *ST, *NWS, *CWS, *NWP
Other Australian states: *Vic. *Tas. *S.A. *W.A.
Festuca elatior was misapplied to this species.
Text by S. W. L. Jacobs & K. L. McClay
Taxon concept: Flora of NSW 4 (1993)
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.