Calamagrostis epigejos is a perennial, densely colonial grass from rhizomes, stems 60 cm to 2 m tall, pale gray-green, nodes often dark; ligules membranous, 0.4-1.2 cm.
Leaves alternate, blades 0.4-2 cm wide, pale gray-green.
Flower spikelets 1-flowered; glumes 0.5 cm long, awl-shaped; lemma 0.2 cm, awned, base with dense tuft of long white hairs, almost as long as the glumes; inflorescence dense, to 35 cm long, dense, fluffy or silky, often purplish; blooming and fruiting Aug.-Sept.
Wetland status: FAC.
Frequency in NYC: Very infrequent.
Habitat: Open sandy soil or fill.