Introduced from Europe, and now found throughout the United States, in southern Canada and Latin America, as well as in Alaska and Hawaii. V. myuros and F. megalura are sometimes separated as two species, but currently combined as only one.
An annual grass reproducing from seeds, this troublesome weed is found in many habitats, such as roadsides, ditches, cultivated crops and orchards. It is not a good forage crop for livestock.
Mature plants grow to 2 feet tall with narrow, upright stems and very narrow leaves that may tend to droop. The flowering head is a panicle up to 8 inches long, with a flattened, almost fan-like appearance. The spikelets are alternate and are also flattened, each with 4 or 5 flowers on it and with very long awns.
Characteristicts Important to Control:
Pre-emergent control with herbicides is preferred, to prevent the thick growth of the weeds. Individual plants are easily removed by hand, or controlled with a contact or systemic herbicide.