Poa trivialis

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Rough bluegrass
Poa trivialis Ruwbeembgras bloeiwijze.jpg
Scientific classification
Kingdom: Plantae
(unranked): Angiosperms
(unranked): Monocots
(unranked): Commelinids
Order: Poales
Family: Poaceae
Genus: Poa
Species: P. trivialis
Binomial name
Poa trivialis

Poa trivialis (rough bluegrass; UK: rough-stalked meadow-grass[1] or rough meadow-grass[2]), is a perennial plant, but regarded in the US as an ornamental plant. It is part of the grass family.


It is very common in meadows and pastures throughout Britain. Its preferred habitat is moist, sheltered places. Its herbage is plentiful and fairly nutritious – not as much as Poa annua or Poa pratensis. It is useful for grazing on heavy and damp soil. It also copes well with the polluted atmosphere of towns and cities. It is in flower from June onwards throughout the summer.

It is often considered a weed of golf courses. It is an invasive species in the Great Lakes region and was first sighted in 1843.[3]

It has short stolons. The leaves are broad and tapering, and the sheathes are very rough. It has shiny leaves like Lolium perenne and crested dog's-tail.[4]

They have pointed ligules 4–10 mm long. Compare to annual meadow grass Poa annua which is silvery and pointed, and common meadow grass Poa pratensis which is short and blunt.

The roughish, slender stem grows 30 to 60 cm high. Compare with smooth meadow grass Poa annua which has a smooth stem. The panicle is green and 15 cm long. The spikelets are egg-shaped.

It has a loose, whorled green panicle, much branched, 15 cm long.

It is also called Orcheston grass, after a village on Salisbury Plain.[5]

Wildlife value[edit]

The food plant of the caterpillars of small heath (Coenonympha pamphilus), meadow brown (Maniola jurtina), gatekeeper (Pyronia tithonus) butterflies; common sun beetle (Amara aenea) – adults feed on the developing seeds, Eupelix cuspidata of the leafhopper family, and Myrmus miriformis a grassbug – feeds on young blades and developing seeds.

It is parasitised by grass mildew Blumeria graminis, which causes a white, powdery mildew on it.



  1. ^ Clause BS 7370-5
  2. ^ "BSBI List 2007". Botanical Society of Britain and Ireland. Archived from the original (xls) on 2015-02-25. Retrieved 2014-10-17. 
  3. ^ "List of invasive species in the Great Lakes Great Lakes United / Union Saint-Laurent Grands Lacs". Retrieved 7 February 2009. 
  4. ^ BSBI Description retrieved 10 December 2010.
  5. ^ Martin John Sutton, Permanent and Temporary Pastures (1929), p. 60
  • The Observers Book of Grasses, Sedges and Rushes. Frances Rose. pages 44–45
  • Natural England description on website
  • Grasses,Ferns, Mosses and Lichens of Great Britain and Ireland. Phillips, Roger. 1980. page 65.

External links[edit]