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barbed oat, slender oat, slender wild oat, slim oat

avoine, avoine cultivée, common oat, cultivated oat, naked oats, oat, wild oat

Habit Plants annual. Plants annual.

60-80 (150) cm, initially prostrate, usually becoming erect.

35-180 cm, prostrate to erect when young, becoming erect at maturity.


of the basal leaves pilose, upper sheaths usually glabrous;

ligules 1-6 mm, obtuse;

blades 6-30 cm long, 2-20 mm wide, glabrous or pilose.

smooth or scabridulous;

ligules 2-8 mm, truncate to acute;

blades 8-45 cm long, 3-14 (25) mm wide, scabridulous.


15-35.5 (50) cm long, 6-12 cm wide, erect or nodding.

(6)15-40 cm long, 5-15 cm wide, nodding.


21-30 mm, with 2-3 florets;

disarticulation beneath each floret;

disarticulation scars elliptic to triangular.

(18)25-32 mm, to 50 mm in 'naked oats', with 1-2 florets (to 7 in 'naked oats');

disarticulation not occurring, the florets remaining attached even when mature.


subequal, 15-30 mm, 7-9-veined;

calluses bearded, hairs 2-3 mm;

lemmas 15-26 mm, densely strigose below midlength, apices acute, biaristate, 2 veins extending 2-4 mm beyond the apices, awns 30-45 mm, arising about midlength, geniculate;

lodicules narrowly triangular, without lobes on the wings;

anthers 2.5-4 mm.

subequal, (18)20-32 mm, 9-11-veined;

calluses glabrous;

lemmas 14-18 mm, usually indurate, membranous in 'naked oats', usually glabrous, sometimes sparsely strigose, apices erose to dentate, longest teeth 0.2-0.5 mm, usually unawned, sometimes awned, awns 15-30 mm, arising in the middle 1/3, weakly twisted, not or only weakly geniculate;

lodicules with a lobe or tooth on the wings, this sometimes very small;

anthers (1.7)3-4.3 mm.


= 28.

= 42.

Avena barbata

Avena sativa

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Avena barbata is native to the Mediterranean region and central Asia. It has become naturalized in western North America, particularly California, displacing native grasses. It was collected once in Vancouver, British Columbia, but should be considered a waif there.

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

Avena sativa, a native of Eurasia, is widely cultivated in cool, temperate regions of the world, including North America. Fall-sown oats are planted in the Pacific and southern states in the United States; spring-sown oats are more important elsewhere in North America. It is sometimes planted as a fast-growing soil stabilizer along roadsides. Several forms are grown, of which the most distinctive are 'naked oats'. These differ from typical forms as indicated in the description, and in having caryopses that fall from the florets. Escapes from cultivation are common but rarely persist.

Avena sativa hybridizes readily with A. fatua, forming hybrids with the fatua-type. lodicule. The hybrids are easily confused with fatuoid forms of A. sativa, which differ in having the sativa-type lodicule.

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

Source FNA vol. 24, p. 735. FNA vol. 24, p. 737.
Parent taxa Poaceae > subfam. Pooideae > tribe Poeae > Avena Poaceae > subfam. Pooideae > tribe Poeae > Avena
Sibling taxa
A. fatua, A. hybrida, A. occidentalis, A. sativa, A. sterilis
A. barbata, A. fatua, A. hybrida, A. occidentalis, A. sterilis
Synonyms A. fatua var. sativa
Name authority Pott ex Link L.
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