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Starr 010721-9002 Arrhenatherum elatius.jpg
tall oatgrass (Arrhenatherum elatius)
Scientific classification
Kingdom: Plantae
(unranked): Angiosperms
(unranked): Monocots
(unranked): Commelinids
Order: Poales
Family: Poaceae
Genus: Arrhenatherum
Type species
Arrhenatherum avenaceum
P.Beauv. ex Boiss.[1][2]

Arrhenatherum, commonly called oatgrass or button-grass, is a genus of Eurasian and North African plants in grass family.[4][5][6][7]


Wild forms can resemble wild oat (Avena) or fescue (Festuca). Oatgrasses are very common perennials with yellowish roots. The shining stems grow to a height of 1.5 meters, but die off in winter. The leaves are hairless with blunt ligules. The inflorescence is a panicle with two-flowered bisexual spikelets.[8]

  1. Arrhenatherum album - tall oatgrass - Mediterranean from Portugal to Cyprus
  2. Arrhenatherum calderae - Tenerife in Canary Islands
  3. Arrhenatherum elatius - false oatgrass, tall oatgrass, tall meadow oat - Eurasia + North Africa from Iceland to Canary Islands + Kazakhstan; naturalized in East Asia,[10] Australia,[11] New Zealand, the Americas[12][13]
  4. Arrhenatherum kotschyii - Turkey, Caucasus, Syria, Lebanon, Palestine, Jordan, Iraq, Iran, Afghanistan
  5. Arrhenatherum longifolium - France, Spain, Portugal, Morocco
  6. Arrhennatherum palaestinum - eastern Mediterranean from Greece to Iraq
  7. Arrhenatherum pallens - Portugal
formerly included[3]

numerous species now considered better suited to other genera: Avenula Danthoniastrum Duthiea Helictochloa Helictotrichon Sphenopholis

See also[edit]


  1. ^ lectotype designated by L.K. Pfeiffer, Nom. 1: 274 (1872)
  2. ^ Tropicos, Arrhenatherum P. Beauv.
  3. ^ a b c
  4. ^ Watson L, Dallwitz MJ. (2008). "The Grass Genera of the World: Arrhenatherum". The Grass Genera of the World. Retrieved 2009-08-19. 
  5. ^ Palisot de Beauvois, Ambroise Marie François Joseph. 1812. Essai d'une Nouvelle Agrostographie 55-56 descriptions in Latin, commentary in French
  6. ^ Palisot de Beauvois, Ambroise Marie François Joseph. 1812. Essai d'une Nouvelle Agrostographie plate XI (11), figure V (5) at lower left line drawings of Arrhenatherum avenaceum
  7. ^ Altervista Flora Italiana genere Arrhenatherum
  8. ^ Valdes, B. & H. Scholz. 2006. The Euro+Med treatment of Gramineae - a generic synopsis and some new names. Willdenowia 36(2): 657–669
  9. ^ The Plant List search for Arrhenatherum
  10. ^ Flora of China Vol. 22 Page 322 燕麦草属 yan mai cao shu Arrhenatherum P. Beauvois
  11. ^ Atlas of Living Australia, Oatgrass, Arrhenatherum elatius (L.) P.Beauv. ex J.Presl & C.Presl
  12. ^ Biota of North America Program 2013 county distribution map
  13. ^ Rosengurtt, B., B. R. A. Maffei & P. I. Artucio. 1970. Gramíneas Uruguayas [i–vii], 1–489. Universidad de la República, Montevideo