Meadow Foxtail - Alopecurus pratensis


Tufted grass 30 to 100 cm tall, usually erect, occasionally kneed at base. Panicles are cylindrical, blunt and soft 2 to 10 cm long and 5 to 10 mm wide. Green or purple flushed. Spikelets are 4 to 6 mm long oblong to elliptical having lanceolate pointed glumes fringed with hairs on the keels.

Similar Species

Timothy is superficially similar

Identification difficulty
ID guidance

An early flowering grass. Inflorescence a ‘pointing finger’ spike. Each floret has a single awn emerging from its centre.


Meadows and grass verges.

When to see it

April to June.

Life History


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 595 of the 617 tetrads.

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Leicestershire & Rutland Map


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

UK Map