4. Alopecurus pratensis Linnaeus, Sp. Pl. 1: 60. 1753.
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Alopecurus alpinus Smith var. songaricus Schrenk ex Fischer & Meyen; A. songaricus (Schrenk ex Fischer & Meyen) V. Petrov.
Perennial, loosely tufted, shortly rhizomatous. Culms erect, slightly geniculate at base, up to 100 cm tall, 3–5-noded. Leaf sheaths loose, smooth, slightly inflated; leaf blades 5–25 cm, 3–10 mm wide, abaxial surface smooth, adaxial surface scaberulous; ligule 2–4 mm. Panicle cylindrical, 3–8 cm, gray-green. Spikelets elliptic, 4–6 mm; glumes herbaceous, smooth, keels stiffly ciliate, lateral veins shortly pilose, margins connate in lower 1/3, apices acute, slightly convergent; lemma equaling or slightly shorter than glumes, margins connate below middle, awned from lower 1/4, apex puberulous, subacute; awn exserted 3–6 mm from spikelet, weakly geniculate, column not twisted. Anthers yellow, 2–3.5 mm. Fl. and fr. Apr–Aug. 2n = 28.
Montane meadows, forest margins, river valleys; 1500–2500 m. Heilongjiang, Nei Mongol, Xinjiang [Kazakhstan, Kyrgyzstan, Mongolia, Russia, Tajikistan, Uzbekistan; SW Asia, Europe; introduced elsewhere].
This species has been introduced to Japan, North America, and some other temperate countries as a pasture and forage grass.