Celebrating and conserving the ecological richness of California's grasslands

Plants    Forbs                             Grasses                            Grass-like plants

Native grasslands support about 40% of California's total native plant species (Wigand 2007:55).

Native plants support native animals. Fletcher, Rebecca A. Rachel K. Brooks, Vasiliy T. Lakoba, Gourav Sharma, Ariel R. Heminger,  Christopher C. Dickinson, Jacob N. Barney. 2019. Invasive plants negatively impact native, but not exotic, animals. Global Change Biology. First published: 07 August 2019 https://doi.org/10.1111/gcb.14752

Regional Guides


Species Spotlight:

Fire Poppy

(Papaver californicum)

by Tatiana Manzanillo,

Grasslands, Summer 2019

Species Spotlight: 

Narrow-leaf Milkweed (Asclepias fascicularis) 

by Emily Allen, Grasslands, Summer 2014

Species Spotlight: 

Dove Weed

(Croton setiger)

by Emily Allen

Grasslands, Winter 2018

Species Spotlight: 

Douglas Iris

(Iris douglasiana)

Grasslands, Winter 2014

Santa Rosa Basalt Brodiaea (Brodiaea santarosae)

A newly described grassland species from the Santa Rosa Plateau: Brodiaea santarosae, The Santa Rosa Basalt Brodiaea,

by Tom Chester, Wayne Armstrong, and Kay Madore, Grasslands, Spring 2009. 

Note: California Rare Plant Rank: 1B.2 (rare, threatened, or endangered in CA and elsewhere).   CNPS Inventory

Santa Cruz Tarplant (Holocarpha macradenia)

by Michele Hammond, Grasslands Winter 2020

Photo courtesy of Seleney Sanchez

Douglas' Meadowfoam (Limnanthes douglasii)

by Andrea Williams, Grasslands, Spring 2017


Ornamental California Native Grasses, Sedges, and Rushes for the Landscape, by Davis Amme, from Grasslands Vol 32 No 3. Summer 2022

California Oatgrass (Danthonia californica)

Amme D, and S Miccalef. 2008. The Ecology and Development of California Oatgrass. Grasslands Vol 18(3): 3-11. 

Laude HM 1949, Delayed Germination of California Oatgrass, Danthonia californica. Agronomy Journal Vol 41: 404-408

Photo: California oatgrass (Danthonia californica), Pepperwood Preserve near Santa Rosa. Photo: Jennifer Hogan

Photo: Jennifer Hogan

Squirreltail (Elymus elymoides) 

by Kendra Moseley, November 2019

Photo: Sheri Hagwood, hosted by the USDA-NRCS PLANTS Database

Fescues -Festuca species

Species Spotlight: 

Fescue to the Rescue (Festuca californica, F. idahoensis, F. rubra, F. spp.) 

by Andrea Williams, Grasslands, Winter 2015

Species Spotlight: 

Small Fescue

(Festuca microstachys)

by Andrew Rayburn


Fall 2015

Species Spotlight: 

The sweet green of narrow mannagrass (Glyceria leptostachya),

by Jeffery T. Wilcox.

Grasslands, Fall 2018

Species Spotlight: Deergrass (Muhlenbergia rigens)

by  Mary Fahey, Grasslands, Fall 2012

North Coast Semaphore Grass (Pleuropogon hooverianus)

A rare and threatened North Coast range grass, by Clare Golec, Grasslands, Summer 2009

Note: California Rare Plant Rank: 1B.2 (rare, threatened, or endangered in CA and elsewhere).   CNPS Inventory

Listed by the State of California as Threatened.

Species Spotlight: Hairy Orcutt Grass (Orcuttia pilosa), by  Chad Aakre. 2020. Grasslands Summer Vol 30(3): 18-20.                                   Photo by George W. Harwell. 

Grass-like Plants: Carex, Juncus, Luzula

Carex Identification

Sedges of Marin County, California - Sedge Identification

Species Spotlight: 

Clustered Field Sedge (Carex praegracilis)

by Emily Allen, Grasslands, Spring 2015


Species Spotlight:

Hairy Wood Rush (Luzula camosa), by Emily Allen, Grasslands Spring 2020 Vol 30 No 2.

Photo: Emily Allen

© All rights reserved                                                                                                                                                                     501(c)(3) Nonprofit Organization
Powered by Wild Apricot Membership Software