Rather frequent in the unglaciated area of southern Indiana and rare in the northern part of the state. It is generally found on black and white oak ridges and rarely with beech. It prefers a rich soil of weathered sandstone and it may be entirely absent in neutral or alkaline soils. A glabrous form of this species has been described but it may not occur in Indiana as all of my 41 specimens are copiously pubescent.
Tufted, slender, 3-8 dm; lvs short, usually hairy (at least the lower), the upper sometimes merely scaberulous, the main ones 2-5 mm wide; infl slender to diffuse, never spike-like, often with spreading branches to 10 cm; spikelets 2.5-4 mm; glumes subequal, 1.5-3.5 mm, the first one blunt, wider than in the other spp., 0.2-0.5 mm wide in side-view and 1/3-2/3 the width of the second glume; second glume 0.5-1 wide in side-view, widest near the blunt tip; lemmas oval, blunt to acute, rarely short-awned, the first 2-3.5 mm, smooth to scabrous, the second smaller, very scabrous; anthers 1.2-1.6 mm; 2n=14. Dry or moist woods and hillsides; Mass. to Mich. and Ill., s. to n. Fla., Mo., and Tex.
Gleason, Henry A. & Cronquist, Arthur J. 1991. Manual of vascular plants of northeastern United States and adjacent Canada. lxxv + 910 pp.