Orchard Grass Dactylis glomerata LinnaeusNon-native  -  Invasive    Synonyms: Orchardgrass.
Kingdom Plantae   >   Division Tracheophyta   >   Class Magnoliopsida   >   Order Poales   >   Family Poaceae   >   Genus Dactylis   

Status:

Orchard Grass is a non-native grass that is common across Maryland. This spring blooming grass can be found in open sunny habitats, like roadsides and meadows. It was first introduced to the United States in the late 1700's in hay and foraging material for livestock. It is still commonly planted as forage material for livestock, and is now established throughout most of the United States.

Description:

Orchard Grass typically grows to an erect three to four feet. The dense groupings of spikelets at the ends of the branches and stems make for easy identification.

Where to find:

Look for Orchard Grass along open roadsides, meadows, and on the edges of agricultural and fallow fields.

Relationships:

Host plant for European Skipper. Zabulon Skippers were observed ovipositing on Orchard Grass in Connecticut (The Butterflies of Massachusetts). A major cause of Hay Fever! Some people experience a rash from contact with the pollen (J. Stasz, pers. comm.).

There are 476 records in the project database.

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Orchard Grass in Howard Co., Maryland (5/16/2017). Photo by Bill Harms. (MBP list)

An Orchard Grass in Charles Co., Maryland (5/24/2014). Photo by Jim Stasz. (MBP list)

Orchard Grass in Somerset Co., Maryland (6/4/2018). Photo by Wayne Longbottom. (MBP list)

Orchard Grass growing in Queen Anne's Co., Maryland (5/7/2016). Photo by Dan Small. (MBP list)

Orchard Grass in Anne Arundel Co., Maryland (5/25/2011). Photo by Bill Harms. (MBP list)

Orchard Grass in Kent Co., Maryland (5/14/2016). Photo by Dan Small. (MBP list)

Orchard Grass in Caroline Co., Maryland (5/13/2018). Photo by Wayne Longbottom. (MBP list)

Orchard Grass in Caroline Co., Maryland (5/25/2014). Photo by Jim Stasz. (MBP list)

Orchard Grass in Howard Co., Maryland (5/24/2010). Photo by Bill Harms. (MBP list)

Orchard Grass in Caroline Co., Maryland (5/14/2018). Photo by Wayne Longbottom. (MBP list)

Orchard Grass in Queen Anne's Co., Maryland (5/21/2018). Photo by Wayne Longbottom. (MBP list)

Orchard Grass growing in Anne Arundel Co., Maryland (5/2/2017). Photo by Tyler Bell. (MBP list)

Orchard Grass in Baltimore Co., Maryland (5/18/2017). Photo by Bill Harms. (MBP list)

Orchard Grass in Washington Co., Maryland (5/28/2017). Photo by Bill Harms. (MBP list)

Orchard Grass in Baltimore Co., Maryland (4/29/2019). (c) susanrich01, some rights reserved (CC BY-NC). Photo by susanrich01 via iNaturalist. (MBP list)


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MBP marks as "Invasive" any taxon listed in the Maryland Invasive Species Council (MISC) list of Invasive Species of Concern in Maryland. You can read their criteria and review the lists here: https://mdinvasives.org/species-of-concern/.