Characteristics: Meadow barley is a medium sized (1 meter), short-lived, perennial bunch grass with strong seedling vigor. It is a relatively large seeded native with approximately 60,000 seeds per pound. Meadow barley can be found in meadows, bottom lands, salt marshes and grassy slopes from sea level to 7,000 ft. where annual rainfall ranges between 10-36 inches. It is tolerant of alkaline soil and will establish on infertile compacted sites. Generally, meadow barley will not persist on dry sites. These characteristics make meadow barley an ideal non-competitive nurse crop with other long-lived perennial native grasses, legumes and herbaceous plants. Meadow barley is the most popular of the native grasses and is used in many native blends because it grows quickly and easily. Meadow barley is an ideal habitat plant, annually erasing predator trails and providing some edible seed for nesting waterfowl.