3. Elymus elongatus (Host) Runemark ssp. ponticus (Podp.) Melderis
Pl. 185 h,
i; Map 748
Elytrigia pontica (Podp.) Holub
Lophopyrum ponticum (Podp.) Á. Löve
Plants without rhizomes, forming tufts. Flowering stems
50–160 cm long, glabrous, often glaucous. Leaf sheaths with the margins hairy.
Leaf blades 8–50 cm long, 2–6 mm wide, usually with inrolled margins, glabrous
or sparsely hairy, with a pair of usually prominent auricles at the base, the
upper surface somewhat corrugated (appearing with 6–8 grooves between the
ridged veins). Inflorescences 10–40 cm long, erect or nearly so, with the
spikelets not or only slightly overlapping on the inflorescence axis, occurring
singly (rarely paired) at the nodes, the axis persistent, not breaking into
segments at maturity. Spikelets with 5–13 florets, erect or ascending,
disarticulating above the glumes and between the florets. Glumes similar in
size and appearance (the lower glume slightly shorter than the upper), the body
6–10 mm long, 1.5–3.5 mm wide, narrowly oblong, 5‑ or 7‑nerved,
flattened and straight or nearly so at the base, glabrous and somewhat
hardened, truncate at the tip, awnless. Lemmas with the body 9–13 mm long,
broadly lanceolate, 5‑ or 7‑nerved, glabrous, bluntly pointed to
rounded or truncate at the tip, awnless. Paleas mostly 7–11 mm long, the tip
rounded or truncate. Anthers 2.5–6.0 mm long. 2n=70 June–July.
Introduced, known only from a single specimen from St. Louis (native of Europe and Asia, escaped sporadically in the western U.S. and Canada). Railroads.
This species was reported for Missouri under the name Agropyron
elongatum (Host) P. Beauv. by Mühlenbach (1979), who noted only a single
tuft. It is sometimes segregated into the genus Elytrigia Desv. and
usually treated as a separate species, Elytrigia pontica (ssp. pontica),
following Jarvie’s (1992) monograph of the group. See the treatment of E.
repens for discussion of the differences between Elytrigia and Elymus
in the strict sense. Apparently there is no valid combination for ssp. pontica
at the species level under Elymus. It differs from true E. elongatus
in having the lowermost spikelets of the inflorescence shorter than the
internode of the axis next to it, the leaf sheaths hairy along the margins, and
the paleas with longer hairs along the keels.