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Montana Field Guide

Montana Field Guides

Lemmon's Alkaligrass - Puccinellia lemmonii

Species of Concern
Native Species

Global Rank: G4
State Rank: S1S2
(see State Rank Reason below)
State Threat Score: Low
C-value: 7

Agency Status


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State Rank Reason (see State Rank above)
Very rare in Montana where it is known only from Beaverhead County on BLM and State Trust Lands. At least one site is actively grazed, though its susceptibility and response to such activity is uncertain.
General Description
Perennial bunchgrass. Stems 15–30 cm. Leaves: blades 1–2 mm wide, mostly inrolled. Inflorescence a pyramidal panicle 3–17 cm long. Spikelets 4–7 mm long. Lemmas 2.5–4 mm long, with an acute tip (Lavin in Lesica et al. 2012. Manual of Montana Vascular Plants. BRIT Press. Fort Worth, TX).

Fruiting in July-August.

Diagnostic Characteristics
Distinguished from other species of Puccinnellia by the thread-like leaves usually 0.5 mm wide, and the lemma length greater than 2.8 mm.

Species Range
Montana Range Range Descriptions


Range Comments
Collected in Beaverhead County; along the western corridor of states within the U.S. (Lavin in Lesica et al. 2012. Manual of Montana Vascular Plants. BRIT Press. Fort Worth, TX).

Observations in Montana Natural Heritage Program Database
Number of Observations: 8

(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)

Predicted Suitable Habitat Model

This species has a Predicted Suitable Habitat Model available.

To learn how these Models were created see

Threats or Limiting Factors
Reported threats to Montana's populations of Lemmon's Alkaligrass are those from livestock and non-native species (MTNHP Threat Assessment 2021). Plants are likely palatable, and potential negative impacts from trampling and grazing are a concern where livestock use is concentrated. Non-native plants are also indicated as threats to populations in locations prone to disturbance.

  • Literature Cited AboveLegend:   View Online Publication
    • Lesica, P., M.T. Lavin, and P.F. Stickney. 2012. Manual of Montana Vascular Plants. Fort Worth, TX: BRIT Press. viii + 771 p.
  • Additional ReferencesLegend:   View Online Publication
    Do you know of a citation we're missing?
    • 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.
    • Lesica, P., P. Husby, and S. V. Cooper. 1998. Noteworthy collections: Montana. Madrono 45:328-330.
  • Web Search Engines for Articles on "Lemmon's Alkaligrass"
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Citation for data on this website:
Lemmon's Alkaligrass — Puccinellia lemmonii.  Montana Field Guide.  .  Retrieved on , from