Smooth Meadow-grass - Poa pratensis


    Tufted, erect, more or less hairless grass 15 to 80 cm tall, with creeping rhizomes. Stems and leaf sheaths smooth. Panicle spreading, more or less pyramidal, branches 2 to 5 together.

    Similar Species

    Poa trivialis, other other meadow-grasses

    Identification difficulty
    ID guidance

    The panicle is clearly branched, with three or more branches at the lowest whorl. Spikelets contain two or more florets without awns. Lemmas easily seen extending beyond glume tips. The ligule is shorter than wide and the lowest sheath is smooth when gently rubbed in either direction against the lips.

    Recording advice

    Photograph of whole plant in flower, and ligule.  The County Recorder has asked for a specimen of this plant to be retained for verification


    Dry grassland, roadside verges and waste places.

    When to see it

    May to July.

    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 527 of the 617 tetrads.

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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