Distribution: Widely distributed on both sides of the Cascades crest in Washington; British Columbia to northern Mexico, east across North America to the Atlantic Coast except in the southeastern U.S.
Habitat: Sagebrush deserts, prairies, and open forests to subalpine ridges, mostly on sandy to rocky soil.
Conservation Status: Not of concern
Strongly tufted perennial, the culms 3-6 dm. tall, glabrous to downy.
Sheaths open, the collar often with straight hairs 1-1.5 mm. long; ligules 0.5-2 mm. long, strongly pubescent; blades 1-2 mm. broad, basally tufted, usually folded to involute, mostly 2-6 cm. long, the tips prow-shaped.
Inflorescence a congested, spike-like panicle 4-13 cm. long, the branches short; spikelets mostly 2-flowered; glumes keeled, usually awnless, the first 3-5 mm. long, 1-nerved, the second 4-6 mm. long, 3-nerved, broader than the first, equaling the first floret; lemmas 3.5-5 mm. long, 5-nerved, awnless or awn-tipped; paleas 2-nerved, shorter than the lemmas; stamens 3.