Meadow fescue

Festuca pratensis


Highly valued in grazing and hay fields throughout the UK and Europe and thrives in loamy and heavy moist soils.  Abundant in wet meadows and old pastures.


Tall loosely tufted, tussock forming perennial reaching a height of up to 120 cm.  Distinguished from tall fescue by hairless auricles.  No rhizomes or stolons.

Spikelets are awnless, 5 – 14 flowered.


Meadow fescue - liguleVery short, 1 mm, blunt.










Auricles: Small, spreading and hairless.

Leaf blade:

Bright green, hairless, upper surface ribbed sometimes rough, up to 4 mm in width.  Lower surface smooth and glossy.  Leaf margins rough.

Meadow fescue ligule 1Meadow fescue auricles. © Blackthorn arable.
Meadow fescue ligule 2Meadow fescue ligule. © Blackthron arable.
Meadow fescue seedling 2Measdow fescue - seedling. © Blackthorn arable.
Meadow fescue mature 1Meadow fescue - mature. © Blackthorn arable.
Meadow fescue mature 2Meadow fescue. © Blackthorn arable.