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Montana Field Guide

Montana Field Guides

Slender Oat - Avena barbata
Other Names:  Barbed Oat, Slender Wild Oat

Non-native Species

Global Rank: GNR
State Rank: SNA
C-value: 1

Agency Status


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General Description
Cultivated annual bunchgrass. Stems 35–180 cm. Leaves: blades 3–14(-25) mm wide. Inflorescence an open nodding panicle 6–40 cm long. Spikelets (18-)25-32 mm long, with 1-2 florets. Lemmas glabrous to sparsely strigose, awnless or with a weakly twisted awn arising from the middle 1/3 of the lemma 15-30 mm long, with an glabrous callus (adapted from: Baum, 2007, in Flora N. America, Vol. 24).

Range Comments
Introduced; CA and OR to NV and AZ; one county record each for NM, MT (Rosebud) and AL (Kartesz in prep. 2012).

Mostly in cultivation or escaped in disturbed areas.


  • Additional ReferencesLegend:   View Online Publication
    Do you know of a citation we're missing?
    • Lesica, P., M.T. Lavin, and P.F. Stickney. 2012. Manual of Montana Vascular Plants. Fort Worth, TX: BRIT Press. viii + 771 p.
    • Lesica, P., M.T. Lavin, and P.F. Stickney. 2022. Manual of Montana Vascular Plants, Second Edition. Fort Worth, TX: BRIT Press. viii + 779 p.
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Citation for data on this website:
Slender Oat — Avena barbata.  Montana Field Guide.  .  Retrieved on , from