Vascular Plants of North Carolina
Account for Rough Bluegrass - Poa trivialis   L.
Members of Poaceae:
Members of Poa with account distribution info or public map:
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Section 5 » Order Cyperales » Family Poaceae
DistributionMountains and Piedmont; disjunct to Chowan County (roadside, specimen annotated by E.A. Kellogg).

Native of Europe; in N.A. mostly the eastern and western U.S. with a big gap in the middle and Deep South.
AbundanceInfrequent to frequent in the Mountains and Piedmont; very rare in the Coastal Plain.
HabitatStream and creek sides, floodplains, bottomlands, seeps, spruce-fir forest (Roan Mountain), roadside (Chowan Co.).
PhenologyFlowering and fruiting April-June.
IdentificationRough Bluegrass is a tufted perennial, the stems 1-3 feet tall (potentially to 4 feet). The inflorescence is elongate, open to relatively tight. Each spikelet contains only 2-4 florets, fewer than most of our bluegrasses.
Taxonomic CommentsThe genus Poa contains some 500 species globally, about 70 in N.A. A typical Poa species has a number of basal leaves, few stem leaves, and a terminal, open inflorescence. The inflorescence is composed of well-spaced whorls of 2-6 skinny branches, usually with short side branchlets and these bearing spikelets. Branches may be strongly ascending, horizontal, or reflexed. Spikelets are composed of 2-6 florets and are generally laterally compressed. Each glume and lemma is acute to blunt, but seldom acuminate as in many Festuca species. Unlike Festuca and Bromus, most Poa species have a small wispy tuft of white hairs at the base of each floret.
Other Common Name(s)
State RankSE
Global RankGNR
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US Status
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