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Weed Identification

crowfootgrass

Family

Poaceae

Scientific Name

Dactyloctenium aegyptium

Other Common Names:

egyptian grass
beach wiregrass

Synonyms (former Scientific Names):

Cynosurus aegyptius

Leaves

Blades are 2-30 cm long, 2-9 mm wide, without hairs or less often having long, stiff hairs. Leaf margins have hairs that point outward. The ligule is membranous to 1.0 mm long and fringed with hairs (0.8 mm long). Sheaths are without hairs.

Identifying Characteristics

Entire plant is most often found without hair, except for the hairs that extend outward from the margins and those found on the ligule. Seed head resembles a crow's foot.An annual grass that bends and roots at the lower nodes, with tips that may rise to about 2 feet in height.

Flower Seed Head

1-7 spikes (1.0-6.2 cm long, 3-7 mm wide) at tip of stem. Seed head resembles a crow's foot

Seed Fruit

Leaf blades and sheaths are without hair. Leaf margins have long, stiff hairs. Ligule fringed, membranous

Where Found

Found throughout the southern states, northward to Maine, west to Illinois and southern California.

Leaf Hair on Upper Surface

hairs from base to tip

Mature Leaf Width

Varies: 
less than 5 mm
6 to 15 mm

Stem

triangle

Seedhead

multiple spikes

Life Cycle

summer annual

Auricle

present

Ligule

membrane

Ligule Length

Varies: 
less than 1 mm
1-2 mm

Plant Type

Grass