Dactylis glomerata

Tracheophyta MagnoliopsidaPoaceaeDactylisDactylis glomerata


A tufted perennial herb of woods, meadows and pastures, downland and hill-slopes, maritime cliff grasslands, fixed dunes, field margins, roadsides and waste ground on a wide range of fertile, neutral and basic soils. 0-685 (Breadalbanes, Mid Perth) and exceptionally at 845 m on Great Dun Fell (Westmorland).



World Distribution

Eurosiberian Southern-temperate element, but widely naturalised so that distribution is now Circumpolar Southern-temperate.

© M. Cotterill, IWNHAS

Broad Habitats

Light (Ellenberg): 7

Moisture (Ellenberg): 5

Reaction (Ellenberg): 7

Nitrogen (Ellenberg): 6


Salt Tolerance (Ellenberg): 0

January Mean Temperature (Celsius): 3.6

July Mean Temperature (Celsius): 14.5

Annual Precipitation (mm): 1091

Life form information

Height (cm): 120

Perennation - primary


Life Form - primary




Clonality - primary

Tussock-forming graminoid, may slowly spread

Distribution information

Count of 10km squares in Great Britain: 2707

Count of 10km squares in Ireland: 981

Count of 10km squares in the Channel Isles: 14

Atlas Change Index: -0.06

Weighted Changed Factor: -19

Weighted Change Factor Confidence (90%)


Distribution information

JNCC Designations


PLANTATT - Attributes of British and Irish plants. (.zip 1455KB) This dataset was compiled and published in 2004, and last updated in November 2008. Download includes an Excel spreadsheet of the attributes, and a PDF explaining the background and nomenclature. Note that the PDF version is the booklet as published, whereas the Excel spreadsheet incorporates subsequent corrections. A hardcopy can be purchased from the Centre for Ecology and Hydrology.

Atlas text references

Atlas (382c)
Beddows AR
1959.  Biological Flora of the British Isles. No. 68. Dactylis glomerata L. Journal of Ecology. 47:223-239.
Grime JP, Hodgson JG, Hunt R
1988.  Comparative Plant Ecology.
Hultén E, Fries M
1986.  Atlas of north European vascular plants north of the Tropic of Cancer. 3 vols.