Inclusion in Plant ID / Comparison Guides

This photo is featured in 4 plant ID/comparison guides:

collage of Canada Wildrye and Riverbank Wildrye

Canada Wildrye (Elymus canadensis) vs. Riverbank Wildrye (Elymus riparius)

Updated February 13th, 2023

These two species are easily confused, especially early in the season before spikes dry out. Both can be glaucous and both have long, drooping spikes. They are readily distinguished by whether or not the awns curl later in the season. E. riparius is more restricted to moist, usually riparian habitats, tolerates greater shade, and ranges farther south in the east of its range. E. canadensis prefers sunnier and more disturbed habitats, can occur in drier habitats, and ranges much farther west.

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collage of Canada Wildrye and Southeastern Wildrye

Canada Wildrye (Elymus canadensis) vs. Southeastern Wildrye (Elymus glabriflorus)

Updated January 30th, 2023

These two species are sometimes confused, especially in the southeastern to east-central Great Plains where their ranges most overlap. Both can occur in a range of moisture conditions and in full sun, both are often glaucous, and both have long, robust spikes with long awns. They are easily distinguished by close examination of the spikes. E. canadensis ranges much farther north and west, and is more likely on higher pH soils and on disturbed sites, whereas E. glabriflorus ranges much farther southeast and tolerates more acidic soils. Although E. canadensis is common on sandy soils farther north, where these species overlap, E. glabriflorus is more likely on sandy soils.

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The other guide is not yet completed and published.