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flouve odorante, foin d'odeur, large sweet grass, sweet vernal grass, vernal sweetgrass

arctic sweetgrass, hierochloe pauciflore

Habit Plants perennial. Plants perennial; loosely cespitose or the culms solitary, rhizomes elongate, 0.3-1 mm thick.

(10) 25-60(100) cm, erect, simple or sparingly branched.

5-26(35) cm.



ligules 0.4-1.3 mm, obtuse;

blades 2-25 cm long, 0.7-2 mm in diameter when rolled, involute to convolute, abaxial surfaces glabrous, adaxial surfaces pubescent.


(3) 4-14 cm, the spikelets congested;

lowermost branches 10-25 mm;

pedicels 0.5-1 mm, pubescent.

1-3(4.5) cm long, 0.3-0.5 cm wide, spikelike, with 1-2 spikelets per branch.


6-10 mm;

lower glumes 3-4 mm;

upper glumes 8-10 mm;

sterile florets 3-4 mm, awn of the first floret 2-4 mm, awn of the second floret 4-9 mm, equaling or only slightly exceeding the upper glumes;

bisexual florets 1-2.5 mm;

anthers 2, (2.9)3.5-4.8(5.5) mm.

3.5-5 mm, green to purple;

rachilla internodes about 0.1 mm, glabrous.


subequal, 2.9-4.7 mm, shiny;

lowest 2 florets staminate;

lemmas sparsely hairy, acute or slightly notched, unawned or awned, awns to 1 mm;

bisexual lemmas 2.9-4.4 mm, with sparse, spreading hairs towards the apices;

anthers 1.5-3 mm.


about 2.5 mm.


0.5-1 mm, pilose-ciliate, sometimes absent;

ligules 2-7 mm, truncate;

blades 1-31 cm long, 3-10 mm wide.


= 10,20.

= 28.

Anthoxanthum odoratum

Anthoxanthum arcticum

from FNA
AK; AL; AR; CA; CO; CT; DC; DE; GA; ID; IL; IN; KY; LA; MA; MD; ME; MI; MO; MS; NC; NH; NJ; NM; NY; OH; OR; PA; RI; SC; TN; TX; VA; VT; WA; WI; WV; HI; BC; LB; NB; NS; ON; PE; QC; Greenland
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Anthoxanthum odoratum is native to southern Europe. In the Flora region, it grows in meadows, pastures, grassy beaches, old hay fields, waste places, and openings in coniferous forests, occasionally in dense shade or as a weed in lawns. It is most abundant on the western and eastern sides of the continent, and is almost absent from the central region. In southern British Columbia, it is rapidly invading the moss-covered bedrock of coastal bluffs, and will soon exclude many native species. Diploids (In = 10) have been referred to A. odoratum subsp. alpinum (Á. Löve & D. Love) Hulten. Because the two ploidy levels can be distinguished only through cytological examination (Hedberg 1990), the two subspecies are not recognized here.

Anthoxanthum odoratum was often included in hay and pasture mixes to give fragrance to the hay, but this practice is waning. The aroma is released upon wilting or drying. By itself, the species is unpalatable because of the bitter-tasting coumarin.

(Discussion copyrighted by Flora of North America; reprinted with permission.)

Anthoxanthum arcticum is a coastal and lowland circumpolar species of the Alaskan, Canadian, and Russian arctic; it is absent from Greenland. It generally grows in wet tundra on acidic, peaty soils. In the warmest sectors of the western high arctic, it is rooted in mats of moss that are growing over carbonate substrates.

(Discussion copyrighted by Flora of North America; reprinted with permission.)

Source FNA vol. 24, p. 759. FNA vol. 24, p. 760.
Parent taxa Poaceae > subfam. Pooideae > tribe Poeae > Anthoxanthum Poaceae > subfam. Pooideae > tribe Poeae > Anthoxanthum
Sibling taxa
A. arcticum, A. aristatum, A. hirtum, A. monticola, A. nitens, A. occidentale
A. aristatum, A. hirtum, A. monticola, A. nitens, A. occidentale, A. odoratum
Synonyms A. odoratum subsp. alpinum Hierochloe pauciflora
Name authority L. Veldkamp
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