Annual or biennial seed grass. Loves fresh, wet but loose, permeable soil. Germinates in the spring or fall. Migrates from the edges of fields and hedgerows. Spread is promoted by minimum soil tillage.
Leaf blade with hairs. Lower surface shiny. The base leaf is rolled up. Ligules are large and white, deeply serrated to fringed, auricles are not present (Picture 1). Panicle with long branches, very loose arrangement (Picture 2). Glume with 2 small teeth and up to 30 mm long awn which is clearly longer than the glume (Picture 3). Each plant produces approx. 200 seeds.