Prepared by Jennifer L. D’Appollonio, Assistant Scientist, University of Maine, Orono, ME 04469.  Updated February 2018.

Scientific name: Echinochloa crus-galli (L.) Beauv.

Common name(s): barnyardgrass, common barnyard grass, barnyard millet

Link(s): USDA PLANTS Profile, Go Botany

Images: (to see enlargements [PC]: click on image, then right click and choose “view image”)


– annual

-has a coarse stalk

-grows along the ground before growing upwards

-can reach 0.8-1.5 m tall

-elongated flat, rough leaves

  • 30-50 cm long
  • 1-2 cm wide
  • distinct veins

-blade sheaths closer to the ground are reddish

-branches are sessile and 5 cm long

-fibrous root system

– may be confused with E. frumentacea or E. muricata; see left sidebar of Go Botany webpage


-wet soils



-disturbed areas

-warm climates


Mature plants show little sensitivity to herbicides applications

-using herbicides pre-emergence or right after shows the best results



Cao, L., L. Berent, and A. Fusaro, 2021, Echinochloa crus-galli (L.) P. Beauv.: U.S. Geological Survey, Nonindigenous Aquatic Species Database, Gainesville, FL, and NOAA Great Lakes Aquatic Nonindigenous Species Information System, Ann Arbor, MI,, Revision Date: 4/4/2019, Peer Review Date: 4/4/2019, Access Date: 1/20/2021

Eric T. Doucette, Ph.D. – Assistant Professor of Biology, MA College of Liberal Arts, North Adams, MA (updated Feb 2018)