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Montana Field Guide

Montana Field Guides

Hairy Brome - Bromus commutatus
Other Names:  Meadow Brome, Hairy Chess

Non-native Species

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

Agency Status


External Links

General Description
Annuals, culms 40-120 cm, erect or ascending. Lower sheaths densely stiff-hairy (hairs often retorse); upper sheaths pubescent or glabrous; ligules 1-2.5 mm, glabrous or pilose, obtuse, ciliolate; blades 9-18 cm long, 2-4 mm wide, pilose on both surfaces. Panicles 7-16 cm long, 3-6 cm wide, open, erect to ascending; branches sometimes longer than the spikelets, slender, erect to spreading. Spikelets 14-18(-30) mm, terete to moderately compressed; florets 4-9(11). Lower glumes 5-7 mm, 5-veined; upper glumes 6-9 mm, 7(9)-veined; lemmas 8-11.5 mm long, backs usually glabrous, distinctly 7(9)-veined, margins scabrous or pubescent, awns 3-10 mm, straight, arising less than 1.5 mm below the leema apex; anthers 0.7-1.7 mm. Caryopsis equal to or shorter than the paleas (adapted from: Pavlick & Anderton, 2007, in Flora N. America, Vol. 24).

Species Range
Montana Range Range Descriptions


Range Comments
Native to Europe and the Baltic region; now widespread across North America (Pavlick & Anderton, 2007, in Flora North America, Vol. 24).

Observations in Montana Natural Heritage Program Database
Number of Observations: 47

(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
    Do you know of a citation we're missing?
    • Culver, D.R. 1994. Floristic analysis of the Centennial Region, Montana. M.Sc. Thesis. Montana State University, Bozeman. 199 pp.
    • 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.
    • Seipel, T.F. 2006. Plant species diversity in the sagebrush steppe of Montana. M.Sc. Thesis. Bozeman, MT: Montana State University. 87 p.
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Citation for data on this website:
Hairy Brome — Bromus commutatus.  Montana Field Guide.  .  Retrieved on , from