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You are here: Home / Plants / Species Profiles / Quackgrass
Species Profiles


QuackgrassScientific name: Elymus repens (L.) Gould subsp. repens

Synonyms: Agropyron repens (L.) Beauv.; Agropyron repens var. subulatum (Schreb.) Roemer & J.A. Schultes; Elytrigia repens (L.) Desv. ex B.D. Jackson; Elytrigia repens var. vaillantiana (Wulfen & Schreb.) Prokudin; Elytrigia vaillantiana (Wulfen & Schreb.) Beetle; Triticum repens L.; Triticum vaillantianum Wulfen & Schreb.

Common names: Quackgrass, medusa's head, Quackgrass rye, Quackgrass grass

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Native To: Eurasia (Klein 2011)

Date of U.S. Introduction: 1600s (Klein 2011)

Means of Introduction: Accidental, probably as a seed contaminant (Klein 2011; Werner and Rioux 1977)

Impact: Crowds out native species and cultivated crops (Klein 2011)

Current U.S. Distribution:



Selected Internet Resources:

Federal Government

Elymus repens
Integrated Taxonomic Information System.

Elytrigia repens Article Citation Search - AGRICOLA Database
USDA. National Agricultural Library.
Research; Special Note: NAL Catalog Search (resources)

Elymus repens (L.) Gould subsp. repens - Germplasm Resources Information Network (GRIN)
USDA. ARS. National Genetic Resources Program.
Taxonomy; Distribution; Legal Aspects

Quack Grass - Weed of the Week (Jul 9, 2005; PDF | 198 KB)
USDA. FS. Northeastern Area. Forest Health Protection. Identification/Description; Photographs; Introduction History; Impacts; Habitat; Distribution; Controls

Elymus repens - Fire Effects Information System (FEIS)
USDA. FS. Rocky Mountain Station. Fire Sciences Laboratory.
Taxonomy; Identification/Description; Introduction History; Impacts; Life Cycle; Habitat; Distribution; Controls; Special Note: References

PLANTS Database - Quackgrass
USDA. NRCS. National Plant Data Center.
Taxonomy; Identification/Description; Photographs; Illustrations; Distribution; Legal Aspects

Agropyron repens (L.) Beauv. - An Assessment of Exotic Plant Species of Rocky Mountain National Park
DOI. Northern Prairie Wildlife Research Center.
Life Cycle; Distribution; Controls

Agropyron repens - Species Abstracts of Highly Disruptive Exotic Plants at Pipestone National Monument
DOI. Northern Prairie Wildlife Research Center.
Identification/Description; Life Cycle; Distribution; Controls

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State Government

Quackgrass - Encyloweedia
California Department of Food and Agriculture.
Identification/Description; Photographs; Habitat; Distribution; Dispersion; Controls

Colorado Department of Agriculture. Noxious Weed Management Program.
Identification/Description; Photographs; Introduction History; Impacts; Distribution; Controls

Quackgrass - Official Control Program
Kansas Department of Agriculture. Plant Protection and Weed Control Program.
Identification/Description; Controls

State of Utah. Weber County Weed Abatement.
Identification/Description; Photographs

Quackgrass - Integrated Pest Management Prescription (PDF | 290 KB)
Thurston County (Washington). Noxious Weed Program.
Photographs; Impacts; Life Cycle; Habitat; Controls

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Elymus repens (L.) Gould. - Invasive Plant Species of Alaska (PDF | 141 KB)
University of Alaska - Anchorage. Alaska Natural Heritage Program.
Identification/Description; Photographs; Impacts; Distribution; Special Note: References

Quackgrass - Invasive Plant Atlas of the United States
University of Georgia. Center for Invasive Species and Ecosystem Health.
Taxonomy; Identification/Description; Photographs; Introduction History; Distribution

Quackgrass Management on Organic Farms (PDF | 347 KB)
University of Maine. Sustainable Agriculture Program.
Identification/Description; Photographs; Life Cycle; Controls

Quackgrass - Ohio Perennial & Biennial Weed Guide
Ohio State University. Ohio Agricultural Research and Development Center.
Identification/Description; Photographs; Introduction History; Life Cycle; Habitat

Quackgrass Management: An Integrated Approach - Agronomy Facts 5 (PDF | 119 KB)
Pennsylvania State University. Crop and Soil Science.
Identification/Description; Illustrations; Controls

Quackgrass - Virginia Tech Weed Identification Guide
Virginia Polytechnic Institute and State University. Plant Pathology, Physiology, and Weed Science.
Identification/Description; Photographs

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Quackgrass - Guide to Weeds in British Columbia
British Columbia Ministry of Agriculture Food and Fisheries (Canada).
Identification/Description; Photographs; Illustrations; Impacts; Life Cycle; Habitat; Distribution; Dispersion; Controls

Ontario Ministry of Agriculture, Food, and Rural Affairs (Canada).
Identification/Description; Illustrations; Introduction History; Impacts; Life Cycle; Habitat; Controls

Elymus repens - Invasive Species Compendium
Centre for Agricultural Bioscience International (CABI).
Taxonomy; Identification/Description; Photographs; Impacts; Life Cycle; Habitat; Distribution; Controls

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Colorado Weed Management Association.
Identification/Description; Photographs; Life Cycle; Habitat; Distribution; Dispersion


Klein, H. 2011. Quackgrass (PDF | 141 KB) University of Alaska Anchorage. Alaska Exotic Plants Information Clearinghouse.

Werner, P.A., and R. Rioux. 1977. The biology of Canadian weeds. 24. Agropyron repens (L.) Beauv. Canadian Journal of Plant Science 57(3):905-919.

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Last Modified: Jul 01, 2014
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