Calamagrostis stricta (Timm) Koel. ssp. inexpansa (Gray) C.W. Greene
New England Northern Reed-grass
Habitat: Damp woods and shaded cliffs. [Rocky coastal (non-forested, upland)]
Range: Local, eastern Maine to northern Vermont.
Aids to Identification: Identification of species of the genus Calamagrostis is usually difficult and dependent upon rather technical characters. They are all perennial grasses with long, narrow leaves, and 1-flowered spikelets with a tuft of hairs at the base of the lemma. This particular taxon is very similar to neglected reed-grass (C. stricta ssp. stricta). Both sub-species grow to 0.3-1 m in height, with condensed spike-like flower clusters, and spikelets 3-5 mm long. Subspecies inexpansa is characterized by very rough leaves; ligules 3-6 mm long with an erose apex.
Ecological characteristics: In Maine this species is known to occur on sparsely vegetated, rocky shorelines, as well as open ledges and outcrops in alpine settings.
Phenology: Fruits in mid-summer.
Synonyms: Formerly known as Calamagrostis inexpansa Gray var. novae-angliae Stebbins, Calamagrostis fernaldii Louis-Marie, Calamagrostis inexpansa Gray. Subspecies not delimited in Gleason and Cronquist (Second ed., 1991).
Known Distribution in Maine: This rare plant has been documented from a total of 5 town(s) in the following county(ies): Aroostook, Hancock, Piscataquis
Dates of documented observations are: 1941, 1953, 1979, 1986 (2), 1988, 1990, 1992, 2000 (2)
Reason(s) for rarity:Range is naturally limited
Conservation considerations: Populations could be threatened by heavy recreational (hiking) use.