Vascular Plants - Poaceae - Anthoxanthum:
Anthoxanthum odoratum
Page Authors: Don Knoke, David Giblin
sweet vernalgrass 
Blooms: April-July
Habit: herb
Duration: perennial
Origin: Introduced from Europe
Distribution: Occurring chiefly west of the Cascades crest in Washington; Alaska south to California, widely distributed throughout the eastern half of North America.
Habitat: Lawns, pastures and wasteland, usually where moist.
Species Description:

General: Tufted perennial, the culms 1-3 dm. tall, erect and hollow.
Leaves: Sheaths open, usually glabrous; ligules 2-3 mm. long, membranous; blades flat, 3-7 mm. broad, with a few hairs up to 2 mm. long near the base.
Flowers: Inflorescence a narrow, tawny, congested panicle 2-9 cm. long; spikelets 3-flowered, the lower 2 empty lemmas; articulation above the glumes; auricles well-developed; glumes unequal, acute, the first 4-5 mm. long, 1-nerved, the second 8-10 mm. long, 3-nerved; sterile lemmas subequal, narrow, about 3 mm. long, pubescent, the first awned from above mid-length in the back, the awn 3 mm. long, the second awned from well below midlength, the awn 7-10 mm. long, twisted and bent; fertile lemma firm, brown, glabrous, 2 mm. long; palea equal to the fertile lemma; lodicules lacking.
Fruits: Single-seed grain (caryopsis).

Distinguishing Characteristics: Roots and crushed foliage often producing a fragrance similar to fresh hay with a hint of vanilla.
Accepted Name:
Anthoxanthum odoratum L.
Synonyms:
Anthoxanthum odoratum L. ssp. alpinum Á. Löve
Anthoxanthum odoratum L. ssp. odoratum

Treated in Flora of the PNW as:
Anthoxanthum odoratum
Additional Resources:

PNW Herbaria Specimens: View list of all Anthoxanthum odoratum specimens in the Consortium of Pacific Northwest Herbaria database.

WTU Herbarium Specimens: View list of Anthoxanthum odoratum specimens in the WTU Herbarium database.

Washington Flora Checklist: Anthoxanthum odoratum treatment.

E-Flora BC: Anthoxanthum odoratum atlas page.

CalPhotos: Anthoxanthum odoratum images.

USDA Plants Database: Anthoxanthum odoratum.
Additional photographs of Anthoxanthum odoratum:
(click on a thumbnail to view larger photo)

Ben Legler, 2005

Ben Legler, 2005

Ben Legler, 2005

Ben Legler, 2005

Richard Old

G. D. Carr, 2006

G. D. Carr, 2006

Berl Nussbaum, 2017

Berl Nussbaum, 2017

Berl Nussbaum, 2017

Berl Nussbaum, 2017

Berl Nussbaum, 2017

Berl Nussbaum, 2017
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Washington Native Plant Society
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