Seed, Plate 27, Fig. 21.
Botanical description: Field Brome Grass is annual, or sometimes biennial, with stems one to three feet high, generally standing many together, and with rather broad, soft leaves. The whole plant has a characteristic greyish green colour. It is easily distinguished from other Brome grasses by the soft hairs covering its lower parts. The panicle is large, spreading even after flowering, and of a characteristic purple tinge. The outer glumes of the flower are provided with long awns; otherwise the spikelets are similar to those of Awnless Brome Grass.
Geographical distribution: Field Brome Grass is a native of Europe, Siberia and Asia Minor. It has been sparingly introduced into America.
Habitat: It is found in waste places, along roads and paths, and in fields where it sometimes grows like a weed.
Agricultural value: Attempts have been made to cultivate this grass. On account of its brief duration, it can be used only in short rotations. It makes rapid growth and gives an abundant yield; for this reason it may be used as a catch crop. Its value for Canada has not been sufficiently tested.
We make (by Art) in the same Orchards and Gardens, Trees and Flowers to come earlier or later than their seasons, and to come up and bear more speedily then by their natural course they do. We make them also (by Art) much greater, their nature, and their Fruit greater and sweeter, and of differing taste, smell, colour and figure from their nature; and many of them we so order, that they become of Medicinal use. We have also means to make divers * * new Plants differing from the Vulgar, and make one Tree or Plant turn into another. - Bacon, New Atlantis, 1676.