Thinopyrum intermedium* (Intermediate wheatgrass)

Formerly known as Agropyron intermedium, or as Elytrigia intermedia ssp. intermedia. Cool season, robust, moderately drought tolerant sod-former, 2 to 4 ft. tall. Adapted to a wide variety of sites but does best on medium to fine textured soils. Generally good palatability to livestock and wildlife.

area of adaptation

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Family: Poaceae

Duration: Perennial

Growth Habit: Graminoid

Native Status: Introduced

Season: Cool

Growth Form: Rhizomatous

Mature Height: 24-48 in.

Annual Precipitation: 12-30 in.

Drought Tolerance: Medium

Shade Tolerance: Intolerant


Wetland Indicator Status:

Fire Resistance: No

Fire Tolerance: High


Coarse Texture:  Yes

Medium Texture: Yes

Fine Texture: Yes 

Salinity Tolerance: Medium

CaCO3 Tolerance: High

pH Range: 5.6-8.4


Seeds per Pound: 80,000

Seeding Rate: 10-15 PLS lbs/acre


Days to Germination:


Chief -Developed for pasture and hayland production in northern latitudes of the U.S. and Canadian prairie region. Well adapted to remain productive under heavy grazing pressure for up to five years. Maintains good productivity under moderate to light grazing for longer than five years. (Released 1961, source of ecotype: former USSR)

Clarke - Developed for pasture and hay production in the northern Great Plains of the U.S. and into Canada. Drought tolerant, excellent seed producing cultivar. Somewhat higher yielding and winter-hardy than Chief, but comparable to ‘Greenleaf’ Pubescent wheatgrass. (Released 1981, source of ecotype: former USSR)

Manifest -

Oahe -High seed and forage producer, and good resistance to rust. A blue-green type with vigorous sod-forming capability. (Released 1961, source of ecotype: former USSR)

Reliant -Developed for its persistence and sustained hay production in the Northern Great Plains region. Vigorous and winter hardy. Matures relatively late, weakly rhizomatous and is strongly resistant to leaf spot. Distinguished from other cultivars by its upright growth habit. (Released 1991, source of ecotype: six clone synthetic with parentage from Eurasia)

Rush -Superior seedling emergence and vigor over other choices. Achieves greater stand density and height quicker than previous releases. Equal or higher forage production than Oahe. (Released 1994, source of ecotype: Berlin, Germany)

Tegmar -A dwarf strain (½ the height of other varieties) with excellent drought tolerance. Forms a dense sod, often used as a low maintenance turf. Resistant to Banks Grass Mite. (Released 1968, source of ecotype: Bolu, Turkey)