Lolium multiflorum

From Wikipedia, the free encyclopedia
Jump to navigation Jump to search

Lolium multiflorum
Lolium multiflorum detail.jpeg
Scientific classification edit
Kingdom: Plantae
Clade: Angiosperms
Clade: Monocots
Clade: Commelinids
Order: Poales
Family: Poaceae
Subfamily: Pooideae
Genus: Lolium
L. multiflorum
Binomial name
Lolium multiflorum

Lolium multiflorum (Italian rye-grass,[1] annual ryegrass) is a ryegrass native to temperate Europe, though its precise native range is unknown.[2]

It is a herbaceous annual, biennial, or perennial grass that is grown for silage, and as a cover crop.[3][4] It is also grown as an ornamental grass. It readily naturalizes in temperate climates, and can become a noxious weed in agricultural areas and an invasive species in native habitats.[2]

It is a host plant to wheat yellow leaf virus in its native Europe.[5]

It is sometimes considered a subspecies of perennial ryegrass (Lolium perenne). It differs from L. perenne in its spikelet, which has a long bristle at the top, and its stem, which is round rather than folded.

It can be mistaken for couch (Elymus repens), which has spikelets along the broad side of the stem rather than the edge.[6]

Other common names in English include Australian ryegrass, short rotation ryegrass, and Westerwolds ryegrass. It is also one of several species called darnel.

This species is now referred to as Festuca perennis.[7][8]


In the United States, Lolium multiflorum is sometimes used as a winter cover crop to prevent erosion, build soil structure and suppress weeds. As a palatable forage crop, it can be grazed by livestock and provide food in years when alfalfa suffers from winter kill.[9]


  1. ^ "BSBI List 2007". Botanical Society of Britain and Ireland. Archived from the original (xls) on 2015-01-25. Retrieved 2014-10-17.
  2. ^ a b Quattrocchi, Umberto (2006). CRC World Dictionary of Grasses: Common Names, Scientific Names, Eponyms, Synonyms, and Etymology - 3 Volume Set. CRC. p. 2408. ISBN 978-0-8493-1303-5.
  3. ^ Cosgrove, Dennis; Michael Casler; Dan Undersander (1999-12-02). "Rygrass types for pasture and hay". Agronomy Advice. Department of Agronomy, College of Agriculture and Life Sciences University of Wisconsin Extension and Cooperative Education. Retrieved 2008-03-31.
  4. ^ Moseley, G.; E. L. Jones; V. Ramanathan (September 1988). "The nutritional evaluation of Italian ryegrass cultivars fed as silage to sheep and cattle". Grass and Forage Science. United Kingdom: Blackwell Synergy. 43 (3): 291–295. doi:10.1111/j.1365-2494.1988.tb02154.x. Retrieved 2008-03-31.
  5. ^ Lapierre, Hervé; Signoret, Pierre A., eds. (2004). Viruses and Virus diseases of Poaceace (Gramineae). France: Institut National de la Recherche Agronomique. p. 605. ISBN 978-2-7380-1088-9.
  6. ^ Readers Digest Nature Lovers Library Field Guide To Wild Flowers Of Britain, 1998, page 416
  7. ^
  8. ^
  9. ^ "Annual Ryegrass". Sustainable Agriculture Research & Education. USDA. Retrieved 9 December 2015.