Elytrigia intermedia (Host) Nevski - Intermediate wheatgrass.

Taxonomic position.

Family Poaceae Barnh. genus Elytrigia Desv.


Triticum intermedium Host, Agropyron intermedium (Host) Beauv., Agropyron hispidum Opiz, Elymus hispidus (Opiz) Melderis

Morphology and biology.

Perennial herbaceous plant with long creeping subterranean shoots, usually forming no tussocks. Stems are 40-80 cm high, thin, genuflexuous near the base, smooth or slightly rough under the spikes. Leaf blades are 3-6 mm wide, flat or with involute edges; pilose from above, and rough on the underside or, less frequently, sparsely pilose or ciliate along the veins. Sheaths are naked, smooth, ciliate at the edges. The inflorescence is a compound spike. Spikes are 10-17 cm long, sparse, straight, non-friable. The rachis is sharply rough along the ribs. Spikelets are large, 1-1.8 cm long, with 3-6 flowers set on the rachis one by one in two longitudinal rows, sessile. Glumes are naked, smooth, oblong, obliquely cut from above, obtuse, 5-8 mm long. The lemma is 8-10 mm long, broadly lanceolate, gently obtuse, naked and smooth, sharply rough at the edge. Wind- and self-pollinated plant. Autochore. Propagated by seed. Blossoms in June; bears fruit in July. 2n = 38, 42.


Central and Eastern Europe (south), Crimea, south of Russia, Caucasus (Ante-Caucasus, Greater Caucasus (central and eastern regions), Southern and Eastern Transcaucasia, Talysh), Middle Asia (western Pamiro-Alai, western Tien Shan, Kopet Dagh, Gissaro-Darvaz), Mediterranean region, Asia Minor, Iran.


Grows in steppes, on open stony and small-grained hillsides, among shrubs, up to the lower mountain belt (up to 2300 m).

Utilization and economic value.

Forage (pasture, hay production). Moderate nutritional qualities. Has been employed in crosses with wheat.


Brezhnev, D.D., Korovina, O.N. 1981. Wild relatives of cultivated plants in the flora of the USSR. Leningrad: Kolos, p.61 (in Russian).
Flora of the Tajik SSR. Pteridophytes - grasses, 1957. Ovchinnikov.s P.N. (ed.), vol.1, Moscow/Leningrad: Publishing House of the USSR Academy of Sciences, p.315 (in Russian).
Tsvelev, N.N. 1976. Cereal grasses of the USSR. Leningrad, Nauka, 788 pp. (in Russian).

© Chukhina I.G.

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