A tall, robust tussock grass with flat, blue-green leaves. Tall, erect stems carry dense, spike-like flower heads, consisting of numerous crowded overlapping flowers. Seeds have no awn, and are smooth and shiny. Base of stem often produces a reddish sap when cut. Similar species include littleseed canary grass (Phalaris minor), canary grass (P. canariensis), and reed canary grass (P.arundinacea).
Coastal valleys and foothill grasslands
Out-competes and displaces native species, creates fire hazard, causes disease in sheep (if grazed)
Animals, water, wind, in soil, on machinery and vehicles; basal parts of the tussock may be broken up and spread in earth-moving or cultivation
Look for this plant along roadsides, ditches and streams