Distribution: Alaska south on both sides of the Cascades to California, east across Canada to the Atlantic Coast, south to Mexico.
Habitat: Common weed of dry to moist soil, from sagebrush desert to grasslands and mountain forests, often abundent in disturbed areas.
Flowers: June - August
Conservation Status: Not of concern
Tufted perennial, the culms 2-5 dm. tall, glabrous to densely soft-pubescent.
Sheaths open; auricles present on some leaves, barely 0.5 mm. long; ligules 0.2-0.6 mm. long; blades 2-4 mm. broad.
Inflorescence a terminal spike 5-10 cm. long, and at maturity almost as thick; spikelets 3 per node, 1-flowered, the central spikelet sessile, its lemma with an awn nearly as long as the glumes, ultimately divaricate; lateral spikelets with a curved pedicle 1-1.5 mm. long, the floret from rudimentary to nearly as large as the central floret; glumes awn-like, 2-6 cm. long.