This section is from the book "An Illustrated Flora Of The Northern United States, Canada And The British Possessions Vol1", by Nathaniel Lord Britton, Addison Brown. Also available from Amazon: An Illustrated Flora of the Northern United States, Canada and the British Possessions. 3 Volume Set..
Culms 1°-3° tall, erect, simple, usually rough below the panicle. Sheaths overlapping, smooth; ligule a ring of very short hairs; blades rough, 1" wide or less, those of the culm 1-3' long, erect, the basal flat, much longer and readily deciduous from the sheaths, involute in drying; panicle 3'-4' in length, open, its branches ascending or the lower widely spreading; spikelets 3-5-flowered, about 4" long; empty scales scarious, unequal, smooth, the first 1-nerved, the second longer, 3-nerved; flowering scales about 3" long, scabrous, often bearing a short awn 1" long or less.
Labrador to Alaska, south to Quebec, North Dakota and British Columbia. Summer. Mistaken for Festuca scabrclla Torr. in our first edition.
Culms tufted, erect, rigid, the base clothed with dry leafless sheaths; sheaths smooth and glabrous; leaves erect, stiff, smooth beneath, rough above, 10' long or less, 1"-2" wide, those on the culm much shorter than those of the innovations; panicle strict, narrow, 4'-5' long, its branches erect; spikelets usually 3-flowered, 3 1/2"-4" long, the scales acute, the flowering scales strongly hispidulous.
Meadows, Montana to Nebraska, Colorado and California. June and July.