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Because it has a rather ordinary appearance and its spikelets are small, this grass doesn't draw much attention to itself. It superficially resembles an oversized bluegrass (Poa sp.), but its lemmas lack the tufts of hair that are typical of most bluegrass species. Perhaps the most striking characteristic is the droopiness of the inflorescence. The common name may refer to the use of a Glyceria sp. in Europe as a source of food for domesticated geese. Fowl Manna Grass is the most common Glyceria sp. in Illinois. It can be distinguished from other species in this genus by the small size of its spikelets and lemmas. Other Glyceria spp. are largely restricted to the northern section of the state; they have spikelets that exceed 5 mm. in length and lemmas that exceed 2.0 mm. in length. Some of these species also differ in having lemmas with less prominent veins, and they often bloom later in the year than Fowl Manna Grass.


Creative Commons Attribution Non Commercial 3.0 (CC BY-NC 3.0)

© John Hilty

Source: Illinois Wildflowers

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