One of the mysteries of the English language finally explained.
A common pasture grass with soft downy leaves, native to Eurasia and naturalized in North America.
Holcus lanatus, family Gramineae
- ‘Some favor perennial ryegrasses and fine fescues; others favor native and naturalized species such as bentgrasses, annual bluegrass, and velvet grasses.’
- ‘Prior to this phase 99 percent of the vegetative cover in portions of the valley was exotic velvet grasses, while today 90 percent is made up of native plants.’
- ‘The name velvet grass comes from the appearance its pale purple flower heads make when growing amassed in an open field.’
- ‘Unfortunately, velvet grass displaces native species, transforms food webs, and simplifies whole ecosystems into monotonous and relatively unproductive versions of ‘natural.’’
- ‘Locally, prescribed burning by the California Department of Parks and Recreation at Franklin Point and by the California Department of Forestry at UCSC has apparently slowed the invasion of velvet grass and many other weedy species.’
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