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FOWL MEADOW GRASS.   69

 

or pasture, except in shady parks and open woodlands where forage is required. It can be used to great advantage for lawns under trees.

 

Seed: Most of the seed of the trade is obtained from Germany, where it is collected from wild plants and cleaned by hand.

 

Quality of seed: The seeds are much like those of Kentucky Blue and Rough-stalked Meadow Grass, but differ in having faintly nerved glumes. In this respect they closely resemble those of Fowl Meadow Grass, from which they differ in having sharply pointed glumes. They are bright yellowish brown, sometimes with a purplish tint.

FOWL MEADOW GRASS (Poa palustris L.)

 

Other Latin names: Poa flava L., Poa serotina Ehrh., Poa triflora Gilib.

Other English name: False Red Top.

Botanical description: Fowl Meadow Grass is perennial with short runners which produce few and short leafy shoots. It looks rather like Rough-stalked Meadow Grass, but the plants form looser tufts, consisting chiefly of flower-bearing stems. These are rarely quite upright but are ascending, their base lying flat on the ground. At the base they produce roots and secondary branches which develop into ordinary leafy stems. The stems are from two to five feet high, leafy to above the middle. The stem leaves are long and narrow, soft in texture and bright green in colour. Their ligule is generally long but blunt. The panicles are large, with numerous branches from the joints. At flowering time the branches are widely spreading; later they are upright and form a narrow panicle. Each spikelet contains three to six flowers of a peculiar colour. The lower part is green and the top is yellow or brown with a golden or bronze lustre. The spikelets are thus two-coloured, and the effect of the whole panicle is characteristic and quite different from that of either Kentucky Blue or Rough-stalked Meadow Grass.

 

Geographical distribution: Fowl Meadow Grass is a native of Europe, temperate Asia and North America.

 

Habitat: It grows naturally in moist meadows, in ditches and along seashores and streams, etc.


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