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Montana Field Guide

Montana Field Guides

Crested Wheatgrass - Agropyron cristatum
Other Names:  Agropyron desertorum

Non-native Species

Global Rank: G5
State Rank: SNA

Agency Status
MNPS Threat Rank:
C-value: 0

External Links

General Description
Stems mostly 30–80 cm. Leaves: blades 2–9 mm wide, often open but becoming inrolled upon drying, leaf sheaths and collar hairless. Inflorescence 2.5–7(–11) cm long, rachis continuous, the internodes 0.5–2.5(–5) mm long. Spikelets 6–11(–16) mm long, widely divergent from the main rachis; florets mostly 2 to 8 per spikelet, glumes shorter than florets, narrow and tapering to an awn-tip. Lemmas hairless, awn-tipped or with awns to 5 mm long. (Lavin in Lesica 2012. Manual of Montana Vascular Plants. BRIT Press. Fort Worth, TX).

Species Range

Range Comments
Introduced and cultivated throughout much of North America except in the southeast (Lavin in Lesica 2012. Manual of Montana Vascular Plants. BRIT Press. Fort Worth, TX).

Observations in Montana Natural Heritage Program Database
Number of Observations: 302

(Click on the following maps and charts to see full sized version) Map Help and Descriptions
Relative Density



(Observations spanning multiple months or years are excluded from time charts)


  • Additional ReferencesLegend:   View Online Publication
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    • Heidinga, L. and S. D. Wilson. 2002. The impact of an invading alien grass (Agropyron cristatum) on species turnover in native prairie. Diversity and Distributions (2002) 8: 249-258.
    • Lesica, P., M. T. Lavin, and P. F. Stickney. 2012. Manual of Montana Vascular Plants. Fort Worth, TX: BRIT Press. viii + 771 p.
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Citation for data on this website:
Crested Wheatgrass — Agropyron cristatum.  Montana Field Guide.  .  Retrieved on , from