Oat - Avena sativa

    Alternative names
    Cultivated Oat and as Common Oat

    Similar to Wild Oat, but the spikelets are 17 to 20 mm long, usually without hairs on the lemma bases; the lemmas usually unawned.  If awns present, fairly straight and usually glabrous

    Similar Species

    Avena fatua.  Other Avena may be cultivated and present as rare aliens.  This is a difficult genus; refer to Stace (4th edn.) for details.

    Identification difficulty
    ID guidance

    Usually awnless; sometimes with nearly straight awns at maturity. Usually glabrous

    Recording advice

    The County Recorder has asked for a specimen of this plant to be retained for verification


    Roadside verges and field margins.

    When to see it

    Flowers June to September.

    Life History


    UK Status

    Widespread in Britain as a relic of cultivation.

    VC55 Status

    Occasional escape from cultivation in Leicestershire and Rutland. It was not recorded in the 1979 Flora survey of Leicestershire.

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    Leicestershire & Rutland Map

    MAP KEY:

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

    UK Map