Page author: Don Knoke
Poa macrantha
sand-dune blue grass

Distribution: Southern Vancouver Island and the islands of Puget Sound, south along the coast to Mendocino County, California.

Habitat: Chiefly on sand dunes.

Flowers: April - July

Origin: Native

Growth Duration: Perennial

Conservation Status: Not of concern


Strongly rhizomatous, dioecious perennial, the culms hollow, glabrous, 2-4 dm. tall.


Sheaths glabrous, open most of their length, but closed as least for the lower 2-3 cm.; ligules 1-1.5 mm. long, thick, strongly pubescent, truncate, highest on the sides; blades stiff and involute, in dense basal tufts, up to 3 mm. broad, 5-12 cm. long, the tips only slightly prow-like.


Inflorescence a compact panicle 4-12 cm. long, the branches short, stiff and ascending; spikelets 4- to 6-flowered, occasionally bulbiferous; glumes subequal, about 9 mm. long, 5-nerved, keeled; lemmas about 9 mm. long, 7- to 11-nerved, pubescent on the keel and marginal nerves, the rachilla also pubescent with soft, straight hairs; staminate flowers with anthers 3.5 mm. long, pistillate flowers with vestigial stamens.

Accepted Name:
Poa macrantha Vasey
Publication: Bulletin of the Torrey Botanical Club 15: 11. 1888.

Synonyms & Misapplications:
Poa douglasii Nees ssp. macrantha (Vasey) D.D. Keck
Poa douglasii Nees var. macrantha (Vasey) B. Boivin
Additional Resources:

PNW Herbaria: Specimen records of Poa macrantha in the Consortium of Pacific Northwest Herbaria database.

WA Flora Checklist: Poa macrantha checklist entry.

E-Flora BC: Poa macrantha atlas page.

CalPhotos: Poa macrantha photos.

USDA Plants: Poa macrantha information.

7 photographs:
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