Festuca richardsonii Hooker - Arctic (Richardson's) fescue.

Taxonomical position.

Family Poaceae Benth. Genera Festuca L.


Festuca rubra subsp. arctica (Hack.) Govor.

Morphology and biology.

Perennial cereal. The plant usually does not form turfs with creeping rhizomes. Stalks bare and smooth, 20-80 cm in height. Leaves are 0.6-2 mm in width; ligulas of the top leaves are 0.2-0.5 mm in length. Panicle 4.5-12 cm in length, compressed; branchlets pubescent or rough. Spikelets 6-12 mm in length. The bottom floral scales lanceolate-obovate, 4-5.3 mm in length, with shaggy pubescence and awn 0.1-1.5 mm in length. Blossoms in July-August. Anemophilous. 2n=42 (14).


Occurs in northern areas of the European part of the former USSR, Siberia, the Far East, the high-mountainous belt of Central Asia and Eastern Siberia, Scandinavia, Western China, Mongolia, and northern North America.


In Arctic regions, this species occurs in lawns, in sand, among pebbles, on stony slopes and in barren areas.

Use and economic value.

Fodder plant.

Literature cited:

Hulten E., Fries M. 1986. Atlas of Northern European Vascular Plants North of the Tropic of Cancer. Vol. 1-3. Konigstein, 1172 p.
Kharkevich S.S., ed. 1985. Vascular plants of the Soviet Far East. Vol. 1. Leningrad: Nauka, 398 pages.
Malyshev L.I., Peshkova G.A., eds. 1990. Flora of Siberia. Vol. 2. Poaceae (Gramineae). Novosibirsk: Nauka, 361 pages.
Tzvelev N.N. 1976. Cereals of the USSR. Leningrad: Nauka, 788 pages.
Tzvelev N.I., ed. 1974. Flora of Northeast of the European part of the USSR. Vol. 1. Families Polypodiaceae - Gramineae. Leningrad: Nauka, 275 pages.

© Malyshev L.L.

Copyright on the photos belongs to E. Dzyubenko.

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