Elymus hystrix is a perennial C3 grass (Basinger 2002), solitary or few stems from creeping about 80 cm.
Leaves 10-30 cm long, 0.8-1.5 cm wide, tapering at both ends, rough textured or hairy.
Flower spikelets well separated; awns about 3 cm, self pollinating; inflorescence spikes bristly, 5-12, cm long, erect; blooming June-Aug.
Wetland status: UPL.
Frequency in NYC: Very infrequent.
Habitat: Upland open woods, gaps.
Notes: Plants often infected by endophytic fungi Acremonium sp. and Epichloë elymi (Clavicipitaceae, Ascomycota), (Clay and Leuchtmann 1989; Schardl and Leuchtmann 1999).