categoryZGrasses Grasses List 

BLUE MOOR-GRASS

Sesleria caerulea

Grasses Family [Poaceae]

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category
category8Grasses
status
statusZnative
flower
flower8mauve flower8purple flower8beetroot
inner
inner8green
type
typeZspiked
stem
stem8round
rarity
rarityZscarce

26th April 2012, Gait Barrow, Silverdale, Lancs. Photo: © RWD
Much shorter than Purple Moor-Grass forming a small tussock.


26th April 2012, Gait Barrow, Silverdale, Lancs. Photo: © RWD
The flowering heads look blackish with the odd tinge of purple.


26th April 2012, Gait Barrow, Silverdale, Lancs. Photo: © RWD
Less than half a metre tall, often much shorter.


26th April 2012, Gait Barrow, Silverdale, Lancs. Photo: © RWD
Flowers are in short tight spikes.


26th April 2012, Gait Barrow, Silverdale, Lancs. Photo: © RWD
The flowering spike is not straight, but curved, with the inward side being dark greenish.


26th April 2012, Gait Barrow, Silverdale, Lancs. Photo: © RWD
And the outward side much more purplish to beetroot coloured with a shiny sheen. Whatever, it is definitely not blue, as its name suggests.


26th April 2012, Gait Barrow, Silverdale, Lancs. Photo: © RWD
Flowering stalk straight, with several leaves of differing length sheathing off at intervals.


26th April 2012, Gait Barrow, Silverdale, Lancs. Photo: © RWD
Leaves sheathing off.


Slight resemblance to some other grasses with purple heads: Alpine Cat's-tail, Purple Stem Cat's-tail, but that has a much longer spike and to Purple Moor-Grass, but that has a very much longer spike, is taller and grows on acid moorland.

Unlike the much taller Purple Moor-Grass which grows in acidic soils on moorland, Blue moor-grass grows on limestone grassland. Paradoxically, both are purple, in particular, Blue Moor-grass is not blue!

Fairly rare, inhabiting only a few dozen hectads in central England from Arnside to Newcastle, and a few more in Ireland.

There is only one in its species (at least in the UK).


  Sesleria caerulea  ⇐ Global Aspect ⇒ Poaceae  

Distribution
 family8Grasses family8Poaceae

 BSBI maps
genus8Sesleria
Sesleria
(Blue Moor-Grass)

BLUE MOOR-GRASS

Sesleria caerulea

Grasses Family [Poaceae]