bulbous canarygrass
Phalaris aquatica L.


Phalaris tuberosa is now considered a synonym of P. aquatica. In the following text, the two names are interchangeable.

The following desciption is from Munz and Keck (1968).

Phalaris tuberosa is a perennial grass forming large clumps with short rhizomes around the base. The culms are stout and can grow up to 150 cm tall. The panicle is narrow, 5-15 cm long, dense, spikelike, and unbranched. The glumes are 5-6 mm long with a scabrous (rough) keel. The fertile lemma is 4 mm long, ovate-lanceolate, and strigose (with sharp and stiff appressed straight hairs). There is usually one sterile lemma, about one-third as long as the fertile one.

P. tuberosa can be distinguished from all but one other Phalaris species, P. arundinacea, by its rhizomatous growth habit. In the case of P. arundinacea, which also has underground rhizomes, the length of the sterile lemmas must be ascertained. In P. tuberosa this length is 1.5 mm, whereas in P. arundinacea it is 1 mm.

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EDDMapS Distribution

EDDMapS Distribution - This map is incomplete and is based only on current site and county level reports made by experts, herbaria, and literature. For more information, visit www.eddmaps.org

State Regulated List

State Regulated List - This map identifies those states that list this species on their regulated list. For more information, visit Invasive.org

Taxonomic Rank

Kingdom: Plantae
Phylum: Magnoliophyta
Class: Liliopsida
Subclass: Commelinidae
Order: Cyperales
Family: Poaceae
Genus: Phalaris
Subject: Phalaris aquatica L.

Synonyms and Other Names

Other Common Names:
Harding grass, Hardinggrass

Related Scientific Names:
Phalaris tuberosa L. (Synonym)


Plants - Grass or Grasslike