Elymus glaucus


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Plant Description: An upright, mound-forming bunch grass. Wiry stalks of pendulous flowers top the dark green, densely tufted, thin leaves found at the base of the plant. Wheat colored spikelets (reproductive parts of the grass family) arise from the ends of long branchlets in the inflorescence. Leaves are not retained year-to-year. One of the earliest grasses to bloom in the spring with plumes of flowers.

  • Height: up to 3ft
  • Width: up to 3ft
  • Watering needs: regular
  • Sun needs: sun to part shade
  • Soil needs: moist to dry soil
  • Bloom Time: July to September
  • Ripening Time: seeds mature August to September
  • Portland Plant List (Backyard Habitat Certification): Yes

Landscape Use and Ecological Function: This Willamette Valley native is widespread in the Western States. It is most often found in the mountains at high elevations, 5,000-10,000 ft, on rocky ridges and moist meadows. It grows poorly at lower elevations but can be found near the coast in wetlands.

We recommend this plant in meadowscapes as well as in rain and woodland gardens. It is a butterfly host and also helps bolster habitat for wildlife. Very tolerant of cold temperatures and long snowy periods.

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