Page author: Don Knoke
Taeniatherum caput-medusae
medusa-head
WTU specimens
Other herbaria

Distribution: Sparingly introduced in east-central Washington; more common on both sides of the Cascades in Oregon, east into southeast Idaho and south into California.

Habitat: Weed of waste ground.

Flowers: May - June

Origin: Introduced

Conservation Status: Not of concern

Description:
General:

Usually puberulent annual, the stems 2-6 dm. tall.

Leaves:

Sheaths open; auricles well-developed; ligules membranous, 0.5 mm. long; blades short, 1-1.5 mm. broad, the margins with conspicuous long, stiff hairs.

Flowers:

Inflorescence a spike 2-5 cm. long; spikelets usually 2 per node, crowded, with 1 perfect flower, the rachilla prolonged with a vestige of a second flower; glumes very narrow, stiff, tapered to a slender awn up to 3 cm. long; lemmas scabrous, 3-nerved, 5-7 mm. long, with a strong, flattened awn 3-10 cm. long.

Accepted Name:
Taeniatherum caput-medusae (L.) Nevski
Publication: Trudy Sredne-Aziatsk. Gosud. Univ., Ser. 8b, Bot. 17: 38. 1934.

Synonyms & Misapplications:
Elymus caput-medusae L. [HC]
Taeniatherum asperum (Simonk.) Nevski
Additional Resources:

PNW Herbaria: Specimen records of Taeniatherum caput-medusae in the Consortium of Pacific Northwest Herbaria database.

WA Flora Checklist: Taeniatherum caput-medusae checklist entry.

E-Flora BC: Taeniatherum caput-medusae atlas page.

CalPhotos: Taeniatherum caput-medusae photos.

USDA Plants: Taeniatherum caput-medusae information.

11 photographs:
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