Poa alpigena (Blytt.) Lindm. - High-mountain bluegrass.

Taxonomic position.

Family Poaceae Barnhart., genus Poa L.


Poa pratensis subsp. alpigena (Blytt) Hiit., Poa pratensis subsp. zhukoviae Jurtz. et Tzvel.

Biology and morphology.

Perennial grass of small size, cespitous. Stems erect, glabrous, 10-70 cm tall.
Leaf blade narrow (about 0.6-2.0 mm), short, folded. Ligule of the upper leaves up to 2.0 mm long. Panicle-like inflorescence, spreading, slightly compressed, 5.0-10.0 cm long. Spikelets 5.0 mm long, dark in color. Lemma is pubescent along the edges and the keel. Anthers are 1.3-1.8 mm long. Blossoms in May-June; seeds ripen in August. Facultative cross-pollination by wind. Viviparous forms are rather common. 2n = 42, 56, 60, 62, 70, 72.


Occurs in the Arctic, Northern European and Western Siberian parts of Russia, Eastern Siberia, and the Far East.


Psychromesophyte, adapted to boreal and mountain climates. Occurs in alpine and sub-alpine meadows, in different tundra, in the forest zone, along seashores and riversides, and on stony slopes close to water. Occurs as high as the upper mountain zone.

Utilization and economic value.

Forage grass of natural tundra pastures. One of the best pasture plants of mountain meadows. Good palatability for cattle, deer, sheep, goats and horses. Good re-growth after 2-4 grazings. Can be used as a lawn grass.

Literature cited:

Brezhnev D.D., Korovina O.N. 1980. Wild relatives of the cultivated plants of flora of the USSR. L.: Kolos, 376 pp. (in Russian).
Fedorov A.A., ed. 1974. Flora of the European part of the USSR. Vol. 1. L.: Nauka, 404 pp. (in Russian).
Harkevich S.S., ed. 1985. Vascular Plants of the Soviet Far East. Vol. 1. St. Petersburg: Nauka, 390 p. (in Russian).
Hulten E., Fries M. 1986. Atlas of Northern European vascular plants north of the Tropic of Cancer. Vol. 1-3. Konigstein, 1172 p.
Malyshev L.I., Peshkova G.A., eds. 1990. Flora of Siberia. Vol. 2. Novosibirsk: Nauka, 361 pp. (in Russian).
Malyshev L.I., Peshkova G.A., eds. 1979. Flora of Central Siberia. Vol. 1. Novosibirsk: Nauka, 536 pp. (in Russian).
Rodjevitz P.U., Schischkin V.K., eds. 1937. Flora of the USSR. Vol. 2. M.-L.: USSR, 778 pp. (in Russian).
Tolmachev A.I., ed. 1964. Arctic flora of the USSR. Vol. 2. M.-L.: Nauka, 273 p. (in Russian).
Tzvelev N.N. 1976. Poaceae USSR. L.: Nauka, 788 pp. (in Russian).

© N.I. Dzyubenko & E.A. Dzyubenko

Copyright on the photos belongs to N.I. Dzyubenko.

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