Photo by Melody

PlantFiles: Timothy, Cat's Tail
Phleum pratense

Family: Poaceae (poh-AY-see-ee) (Info)
Genus: Phleum (FLEE-um) (Info)
Species: pratense (pray-TEN-see) (Info)

Synonym:Phleum nodosum
Synonym:Phleum pratense var. nodosum
Synonym:Phleum pratense subsp. nodosum

One vendor has this plant for sale.

2 members have or want this plant for trade.

Ornamental Grasses and Bamboo

18-24 in. (45-60 cm)
24-36 in. (60-90 cm)

6-9 in. (15-22 cm)

USDA Zone 3b: to -37.2 C (-35 F)
USDA Zone 4a: to -34.4 C (-30 F)
USDA Zone 4b: to -31.6 C (-25 F)
USDA Zone 5a: to -28.8 C (-20 F)
USDA Zone 5b: to -26.1 C (-15 F)
USDA Zone 6a: to -23.3 C (-10 F)
USDA Zone 6b: to -20.5 C (-5 F)
USDA Zone 7a: to -17.7 C (0 F)
USDA Zone 7b: to -14.9 C (5 F)

Sun Exposure:
Full Sun

Unknown - Tell us

Bloom Color:

Bloom Time:
Late Spring/Early Summer
Mid Summer
Late Summer/Early Fall

Grown for foliage

Other details:
Average Water Needs; Water regularly; do not overwater

Soil pH requirements:
5.6 to 6.0 (acidic)
6.1 to 6.5 (mildly acidic)
6.6 to 7.5 (neutral)

Patent Information:

Propagation Methods:
By dividing the rootball
From seed; direct sow outdoors in fall
From seed; direct sow after last frost

Seed Collecting:
Bag seedheads to capture ripening seed
Allow seedheads to dry on plants; remove and collect seeds

Click thumbnail
to view:

By melody
Thumbnail #1 of Phleum pratense by melody

By Zaragoza
Thumbnail #2 of Phleum pratense by Zaragoza


2 positives
No neutrals
No negatives

Gardeners' Notes:

Positive Farmerdill On Nov 20, 2006, Farmerdill from Augusta, GA (Zone 8a) wrote:

When I was young this was a popular hay crop, planted with Mammoth Clover and Korean lespideza. The clover timothy mix was an excellent early hay, with Korean lespideza being the fall crop.

Positive melody On May 23, 2005, melody from Benton, KY (Zone 7a) wrote:

A common pasture and forage plant throughout North America. It was naturalized from Europe and it's bristly seed head is easy to identify.

It is an exellent hay plant and birds make use of the seeds also.

The seed heads emerge in late spring throughout the summer and into fall. Many farmers get more than one cutting from hay pastures seeded with Timothy. The best nutrition in any hay plant is just as the seed heads are forming, and farmers who are concerned with proper nuitrients for their animals in the winter will cut hay accordingly.


This plant has been said to grow in the following regions:

Benton, Kentucky
Bowlus, Minnesota
Radford, Virginia
Troy, Virginia

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