Species ID

Would you like to ID a grass or a legume?


Look at the place where the leaf joins the stem.

Can you see tiny flaps (called auricles) at the leaf base?

There are auricules
There are no auricules

Look closely at the auricles – what can you see?

There are tiny hairs on the auricules
The auricules are short (1mm or less)
The auricules are long (2mm or more)

Cut across the stem – what shape is it?

The stem is round
The stem is flattened

Look at the place where the leaf joins the stem and find the skin-like-flap – this is called the ‘ligule’. what does it look like?

Ligule has a pointed tip
Ligule has a flat, ragged top
Tall Fescue (Schedonorus arundinaceus)<

What are the leaves like?

There are three leaflets
The are five leaflets (2 clasp on the stem)
The are many leaflets

What is the leaflet like?

ThereĀ  leaflet on the end has no stalk
The are many leaflets

Are the leaves hairy? Try stroking the underside with your finger?

Leaf is hairless, it feels smooth
Leaf is hairy, it feels rough

Is the plant upright, or creeping along the ground?
Does it have stolons (horizontal stems)? Try following a flowering stem to the soil with your fingers and gently pull it up

Plant is upright (no stolons)
Plant is creeping. There are roots along the uprooted stem (stolons)
I’m not sure ( the next question will use less reliable features)

Does the leaves have crescent shaped marks?

Some leaves have crescent marks
No leaves have crescent marks

Does the leaves have crescent shaped marks?

Pink, or no flowers