Cock's-foot - Dactylis glomerata

Alternative names
Cocksfoot Grass
Description

Robust and more or less hairless plant to 1 metre with stiff, rough, grey green leaves. Inflorescence is erect 3 to 15 cm long, with one or two stiff lower branches and a longer upper branch. All bear dense ovoid clusters of flattened green or purple tinged spikelets. Cock's-foot is a species that can be affected by vivipary which causes abnormal development and growth (see an explanation on the 'Cabinet of Curiosities' website using the link in 'Further Information' section below)

Identification difficulty
ID guidance

The panicle is clearly branched, with only one branch at the lowest ‘whorl’. Spikelets are in dense clusters at the ends of each branch. Stem bases are compressed and often slightly winged. The leaves are often glaucous. The panicle is clearly branched, with only one branch at the lowest ‘whorl’. Spikelets are in dense clusters at the ends of each branch. Stem bases are compressed and often slightly winged. The leaves are often glaucous.

Habitat

Meadows and roadsides.

When to see it

May to September.

Life History

Perennial.

UK Status

Very common throughout Britain.

VC55 Status

Very common in Leicestershire and Rutland. In the 1979 Flora survey of Leicestershire it was found in 606 of the 617 tetrads.

Further Information

Leicestershire & Rutland Map

MAP KEY:

Yellow squares = NBN records (all known data)
Coloured circles = NatureSpot records: 2020+ | 2015-2019 | pre-2015

UK Map