Plant Data Sheet
Species (common name, Latin name) Poverty oatgrass, Danthonia spicata
Range Poverty oatgrass inhabits
a large portion of
AK, AL, AR, CO, CT, DE, FL, GA, ID, IL, IN, IA, KS, KY, LA, ME, MD, MA, MI, MN, MS, MO, MT, NH, NJ, NM, NY, NC, ND, OH, OK, OR, PA, RI, SC, SD, TN, TX, VT, VA, WA, WV, WI, and WY (USDA, FEIS, 2003).
occurrence (where, how common) The species of interest is common throughout
Habitat preferences Poverty oatgrass inhabits old fields, pastures, roadsides and woodland margins that have soil that is sand or rocky, low in fertility and low soil moisture (Darbyshire and Cayquette 1989). Poverty oatgrass also inhabits clearcuts, burns, and areas that have been trampled (USDA FEIS 2003).
Plant strategy type/successional stage (stress-tolerator, competitor, weedy/colonizer, seral, late successional) The species of interest is a secondary successor on burned and anthropologically disturbed sites (Philipson 1986). Its ability to colonize after a disturbance is due to long periods of seed dormancy (Livingston and Allessio 1968).
Associated species Poverty oatgrass inhabits many grass, shrub, and forest habitats. Common prairie associates of poverty oatgrass include lowbush blueberry (Vaccinium angustifolium), goldenrod (Solidago spp.), bracken fern (Pteridium aquilinum), little bluestem (Schizachyrium scoparium), wheatgrasses (Triticeae), fescues (Festuca spp.), needlegrasses (Achnatherum spp.), and bluegrasses (Poa spp.) (USDA, FEIS 2003).
May be collected as: (seed, layered, divisions, etc.) Seed or tillers
Seed germination (needs dormancy breaking?) Seeds are highly dormant, but germinate readily on exposed mineral soil (Scheiner 1989).
Seed life (can be stored, short shelf-life, long shelf-life) Due to the seeds dormancy, seeds may be stored for decades.
Propagation recommendations (plant seeds, vegetative parts, cuttings, etc.) Planting both seeds and tillers has been successful.
Soil or medium requirements (inoculum necessary?) Grows well in sandy or rocky soil with low fertility and low moisture (USDA FEIS 2003).
Installation form (form, potential for successful outcomes, cost) Seeds are the most prolific form of reproduction. Poverty oatgrass is highly self-compatible but also can cross-pollinate (Clay 1983).
Care requirements after installed (water weekly, water once etc.) - Information not available.
Clay, K. 1983. The differential establishment of seedlings from chasmogamous and cleisotogamous flowers in natural populations of the grass Danthonia spciata (L.) Beauv. Ecologia. 57(1/2): 183-188.
Livingston, R.B.; Allessiom L.L.
1968. Buried viable seed in successional field
and forest stands,
Philipson, M. N. 1986. A re-assessment of the form of reproductin in Danthonia spicata (L.) Beauv. The New Phytologist 103(1): 231-243.
Scheiner, S. M. 1988. Populations dynamics
of an herbaceous perennial Danthonia spicata during secondary forest succession. The American
Scheiner, S. M. 1989. Variable selection along a successional gradient. Evolution 43(3): 548-562.
USDA FEIS. 2003. www.fs.fed.us/database/feis/plants/ graminoid/danspi/all.html
compiled by (student name and date) Daniela Shebitz,