Photo Credit
Photo courtesy of Cassondra Skinner, USDA-NRCS PLANTS Database.

Indian rice grass

Scientific name
Achnatherum hymenoides
Also Known As
Indian millet, Indian mountain-ricegrass, Sandgrass, Silky mountain rice, Wye
Plant Family
Plant Group
Grows in bunches up to 30 in in height. Slightly wiry leaves are 1-2 mm wide and 15-25 cm long. Flowers are small and appear on the very tips of each hair-like branch of the panicle.
Identification Hints

Indian ricegrass is 8 to 30 inches tall and grows in bunches. It has many tightly rolled, slender leaves, growing from the base of the bunch giving it a slightly wiry appearance. The leaves are about 1-2 mm wide and 15-25 cm long. The flowers are small and appear on the very tips of each hair-like branch of the inflorescence, called a panicle. The 'branches' of the panicle are widely spread out. As with many grasses, the flowers are dainty and you will need to look closely to see them. Indian ricegrass produces small seeds that are rounded and black to brown in color. This grass is typically found in sandy or otherwise well-drained soils. The seeds also have a fringe of short, dense white hairs. Source: USDA PLants

Did You Know?

Indian ricegrass was a widely known food plant of Indian tribes in the Southwest and Great Basin. It's main uses were as ground seed used to make bread, mush, pones and dumplings, and as hay for horses.