Hystrix patula Moench - Bottlebrush Grass


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Hystrix patula - (image 1 of 2)



Family: Poaceae


Common in woodlands.


Acer saccharum, Aster shortii, Bromus pubescens, Elymus villosus, Eupatorium rugosum, Fraxinus americana, Galium concinnum, Geum canadense, Impatiens pallida, Ostrya virginiana, Parthenocissus quinquefolia, Prunus serotina, Prunus virginiana, Quercus alba, Quercus rubra, Ranunculus septentrionalis, Sambucus canadensis, Thalictrum dioidum, Tilia americana, Ulmus americana, Ulmus rubra.


East of the Rockies, absent from the southernmost states.


Upright perennial grass to 5'. Leaves to 12" long and just under 1" wide, rough, diverging; sheaths smooth. Spikelets to 10" long, in two distinct rows on opposite sides of the rachis; glumes absent, or more often reduced to minute bristles or horns at the base of each spikelets; stamens 3; styles 2. Stem smooth.


Flowers mid June to mid July

Wetland indicator: Upland

Most common in woodlands that are regularly burned. The large spikelets resemble a bottebrush, hence the common name. An ornamental grass that does well in part shade. Some authors call this plant Elymus hystrix L.


Niering, W. A. 1979. The Audubon society field guide to North American wildflowers: eastern region.
Knopf/Random House, New York.


Peterson, R. T. and M. McKenney. 1996. A Field Guide to Wildflowers:
Northeastern and North-Central North America.
Houghton Mifflin Company. Boston, MA


Swink, F. and G. Wilhelm. 1994. Plants of the Chicago Region.
Indiana Academy of Science. The Morton Arboretum. Lisle, Illinois.




 Michael Hough 2005