SQUIRRELTAIL
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Elymus elymoides   (Raf. ) Swezey  subsp. elymoides 
[=Sitanion hystrix  (Nutt. ) J.G. Sm.  var. brevifolium  (J.G. Sm. ) Hitchc.]
Cheyenne County, Kansas
Perennial
Height: 6 to 24 inches tall
Family: Poaceae - Grass Family
Flowering Period:   May, June, July
Also Called: Bottlebrush squirreltai.
Culms: Stiff, erect, hollow, and smooth.
Blades: Flat or rolled inward, narrow, often stiff and ascending, 2 to 8 inches long, about 1/10 inch wide, glabrous or lightly hairy, pronounced ridges above.
Sheaths: Open margins, glabrous to hairy.
Ligules: Short, membranous, collar-shaped, irregularly notched; auricles prominent, often purplish.
Inflorescences: Spikes, dense, bristly, 3 to 6 inches long (excluding awns), terminal, sometimes partially enclosed in upper sheaths.
Spikelets: 1-3, on alternating sides at each node, 2-6-flowered; glumes and lemmas with rough awns 1 to 3.5 inches long.
Habitat: Found on dry prairie uplands, pastures, roadsides, and waste ground.
Distribution: Occurs in the west third of Kansas.
Forage Value: Squirreltail has little forage value for livestock or wildlife.
Comments: Tufted. The awns spread wide when mature, giving the inflorescence the appearance of a bottlebrush. The awns can cause injury to the ears, noses, and mouths of livestock.

squirreltail
140 KB
Cheyenne County, Kansas
squirreltail
151 KB
Cheyenne County, Kansas