Sand ostrich grass

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Sand ostrich grass
Eyrst of the sand ostrich (Agrostis vinealis)

Eyrst of the sand ostrich ( Agrostis vinealis )

Order : Sweet grass (Poales)
Family : Sweet grasses (Poaceae)
Subfamily : Pooideae
Genre : Ostrich grasses ( Agrostis )
Type : Sand ostrich grass
Scientific name
Agrostis vinealis

The sand-bent grass ( Agrostis vinealis ), also Heath bentgrass or Schmalrispiges bentgrass called, is a plant from the genus of Agrostis ( Agrostis ) in the family of grasses (Poaceae). It is a pioneer plant on open sandy areas.


Panicle inflorescence

Vegetative characteristics

The sand ostrich grows as a perennial herbaceous plant and reaches heights of 20 to 40 centimeters. Subterranean runners are formed and there are no aboveground runners.

The ligule is up to 5 millimeters long. The leaf blades are about 15 inches long and 2 millimeters wide. The leaves of the non-flowering parts are bristle-shaped, the leaf blades of the stem leaves are rolled up and up to 2 millimeters wide.

Generative characteristics

The flowering period extends from June to September. The paniculate inflorescence is 2 to 10 inches long and up to 7 inches wide. The spikelets are single-flowered and 2 to 3 millimeters long. The glumes are glabrous and about the same length as the spikelets. The lemma is five-nerved and tender-skinned. The kneeled awn becomes 2 to 4 millimeters long; it can also be absent. The anthers are 1 to 1.5 millimeters long.

The fruit cluster is strongly contracted. The caryopsis is 1.5 to 1.7 millimeters long.

The number of chromosomes is 2n = 28 or 42.


The sand ostrich grass is a hemicryptophyte .

Similar species

The sand ostrich differs from the dog ostrich ( Agrostis canina ) by the underground rhizomes instead of above-ground creeping shoots, the different chromosome numbers ( Agrostis canina : 2n = 14) and the clearly different location requirements.

Distribution and location requirements

The sand ostrich comes from Greenland via Central Europe, Russia, Mongolia and China to Alaska and reaches Turkey and North Africa via southeast Europe. The distribution area extends from subarctic and subalpine Eurasia and subarctic America to northwest Africa. While it is common in northern Germany, there are only a few occurrences in the Upper Rhine Plain in southwest Germany. In Switzerland there is evidence from the canton of Zurich on the Upper Rhine. The species from the area between Neubreisach and Ensisheim has been identified in Upper Alsace.

In Central Europe, Agrostis vinealis is found mainly on sandy soils that are poor in nutrients and bases (character species of the Sedo-Scleranthetea class; acid pointer; Ellenberg pointer values : L9, T7, K3, F2, R2, N1). It occurs on inland dunes and in drifting sand areas in older formations of the silver grass lawn (Corynephoretum canescentis), which mediate the dry sand lawn. Furthermore, it occurs in dwarf shrub heaths (order Calluno-Ulicetalia), light pine steppe forests (class Pulsatillo-Pinetea sylvestris), in disturbed grass grass (class Nardo-Callunetea) and also in wood-free rock and scree meadows (Association Asplenietea trichomanis) .


Agrostis vinealis was first published in 1771 by Johann Christian von Schreber . Scientific synonyms of Agrostis vinealis Schreb. are Agrostis stricta JFGmel. , Agrostis canina var. Coarctata (Ehrh. Ex Hoffm.) G.Mey. , Agrostis arida (Schltdl.) F. Herm. , Agrostis canina subsp. montana (Hartm.) Hartm. , Agrostis canina var. Arida Schltdl. , Agrostis canina var. Montana Hartm. , Agrostis coarctata Ehrh. ex Hoffm. and Agrostis pusilla Dumort.

Web links

Commons : Sand Ostrich ( Agrostis vinealis )  - Collection of images, videos and audio files

Individual evidence

  1. a b c d e Arno Wörz: Agrostis vinealis. In: Oskar Sebald, Siegmund Seybold, Georg Philippi, Arno Wörz (eds.): The fern and flowering plants of Baden-Württemberg. Volume 7: Special part (Spermatophyta, subclasses Alismatidae, Liliidae Part 1, Commelinidae Part 1): Butomaceae to Poaceae. Eugen Ulmer, Stuttgart (Hohenheim) 1998, ISBN 3-8001-3316-4 , pp. 335-337.
  2. a b c d e Erich Oberdorfer: Plant-sociological excursion flora. With the collaboration of Theo Müller. 7th, revised and expanded edition. Eugen Ulmer, Stuttgart (Hohenheim) 1994, ISBN 3-8252-1828-7 , p. 252.
  3. Rafaël Govaerts (ed.): Agrostis vinealis. In: World Checklist of Selected Plant Families (WCSP) - The Board of Trustees of the Royal Botanic Gardens, Kew . Retrieved May 25, 2020.