Elymus exselsus Turcz. ex Griseb. - Tall Couch, Tall Wild Rye.

Taxonomic position.

Family Poaceae Benth. genus Elymus L.

Morphology and biology.

Perennial grass. Usually forms no mats. Culms 100-150(200) cm tall, thick, with glabrous nodes. Sheaths of lower (sometimes almost all) leaves shortly, but rather densely pubescent; leaf blades (8)10-18(20) mm wide, flat, on both surfaces or only above sparsely hairy, less often subglabrous. Spikes 13.25 cm long and up to 15 mm wide, straight or slightly bent, dense, green or with violet tinge. Spikelets arranged by 2-3 in nodes, 14-17 mm long, 4-6-flowered. Glumes 8-11 mm long, (3)5-7-veined, lanceolate, gradually sharpened into short (2-5 mm long) awn. Lemma 9-11 mm long, glabrous at back, scabrous at sides and in upper part, with awn 15-28 mm long bent aside. Anthers (2)2.3-3.5 mm long. Flowers in July - August. Anemophilous. 2n=42.


Mountains of southern Siberia, Far East; Central Asia, Mongolia, West China.


In forest-steppe and steppe zones on sands and shingles in river valleys, penetrates into steppified park forests, among shrubberies, in forest meadows, on steppe slopes, rocks and screes, seaside slopes and rocks.

Use and economic value.

Forage grass.


Kharkevich SS., ed. 1985. Vascular plants of the Soviet Far East. V.1. Leningrad: Nauka. 398 p. (In Russian).
Malyshev LI., Peshkova GA., ed. 1990. Flora of Siberia. V.4. Poaceae (Gramineae). Novosibirsk: Nauka. 361 p. (In Russian).
Tzvelev NN. 1976. Grasses of the Soviet Union. Leningrad: Nauka. 788 p. (In Russian).

© L.L.Malyshev

© Photo by N.Yu.Malysheva, L.L.Malyshev

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