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Yorkshire Fog

Holcus lanatus

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Plant Profile

Flowering Months:
Poaceae (Grass)
Also in this family:
Alpine Catstail, Alpine Foxtail, Alpine Meadow-grass, Annual Beard-grass, Annual Meadow-grass, Arrow Bamboo, Barren Brome Grass, Bearded Couch Grass, Bearded Fescue, Bermuda Grass, Black Bent, Black Grass, Blue Fescue, Blue Moor-grass, Bog Hair-grass, Borrer's Saltmarsh Grass, Bread Wheat, Bristle Bent, Brown Bent, Brown Sedge, Bulbous Foxtail, Bulbous Meadow-grass, California Brome Grass, Canary Grass, Carnation Sedge, Cocksfoot, Cockspur, Common Bent, Common Cord-grass, Common Millet, Common Reed, Common Saltmarsh Grass, Compact Brome Grass, Corn, Couch Grass, Creeping Bent, Creeping Soft-grass, Crested Dog's-tail, Crested Hair-grass, Cultivated Oat, Curved Hard Grass, Cut Grass, Dense Silky Bent, Downy Oat-grass, Drooping Brome Grass, Drooping Tor Grass, Dune Fescue, Early Hair-grass, Early Meadow-grass, Early Sand-grass, False Brome Grass, False Oat-grass, Fern Grass, Fine-leaved Sheep's Fescue, Flattened Meadow-grass, Floating Sweet-grass, Foxtail Barley, French Oat, Giant Fescue, Glaucous Meadow-grass, Great Brome Grass, Greater Quaking Grass, Grey Hair-grass, Hairy Brome Grass, Hairy Finger-grass, Hard Fescue, Hard Grass, Harestail Grass, Heath Grass, Holy Grass, Hybrid Marram Grass, Italian Rye Grass, Knotroot Bristlegrass, Lesser Hairy Brome Grass, Lesser Quaking Grass, Loose Silky Bent, Lyme Grass, Marram Grass, Marsh Foxtail, Mat Grass, Mat-grass Fescue, Meadow Barley, Meadow Fescue, Meadow Foxtail, Meadow Oat-grass, Mountain Melick, Narrow-leaved Meadow-grass, Narrow-leaved Small-reed, Neglected Couch Grass, Nit Grass, Orange Foxtail, Pampas Grass, Perennial Rye Grass, Plicate Sweet-grass, Purple Moor-grass, Purple Small-reed, Purple-stem Catstail, Quaking Grass, Ratstail Fescue, Red Fescue, Reed Canary Grass, Reed Sweet-grass, Reflexed Saltmarsh Grass, Rescue Grass, Rough Meadow-grass, Rush-leaved Fescue, Sand Catstail, Sand Couch Grass, Scandinavian Small-reed, Scottish Small-reed, Sea Barley, Sea Couch Grass, Sea Fern Grass, Sheep's Fescue, Silver Hair-grass, Six-rowed Barley, Slender Brome Grass, Small Cord-grass, Small Sweet-grass, Smaller Catstail, Smooth Brome Grass, Smooth Cord-grass, Smooth Finger-grass, Smooth Meadow-grass, Soft Brome Grass, Somerset Hair-grass, Sorghum, Spreading Meadow-grass, Squirreltail Fescue, Stiff Brome Grass, Stiff Saltmarsh Grass, Sweet Vernal Grass, Tall Fescue, Timothy Grass, Tor Grass, Tufted Hair-grass, Two-rowed Barley, Upright Brome Grass, Velvet Bent, Viviparous Fescue, Wall Barley, Wavy Hair-grass, Wavy Meadow-grass, Whorl Grass, Wild Oat, Wood Barley, Wood Fescue, Wood Meadow-grass, Wood Melick, Wood Millet, Yellow Oat-grass
Life Cycle:
Maximum Size:
1 metre tall
Fields, grassland, meadows, moorland, roadsides, wasteland, woodland.

Green, no petals
Pink-purple to white spikelets with short hooked awns. The flowers are tipped with a purplish-red tinge.
Dark yellowish-brown seeds. Oval and dark-tipped.
The entire plant is covered in soft downy hairs, including the leaves, but with the exception of the joint stems. The leaves are long and linear. 'Lanatus' (see botanical name) is Latin for woolly, describing the soft hairiness of the plant.
Other Names:
Common Velvet Grass, Dart Grass, Hose Grass, Meadow Soft Grass, Mesquite Grass, Midge Grass, Rot Grass, Soft Grass, Tufted Grass, Tufted Soft Grass.
Frequency (UK):

Similar Species

Other Information


Holcus lanatus, also known as Yorkshire fog, is a perennial grass that belongs to the family Poaceae. It is native to Europe, and typically grows in grasslands, meadows, and other open habitats. The plant has soft, hair-like leaves, and produces small, green-white flowers. It is considered a common grass in many parts of Europe, and is not commonly used in traditional medicine or as a weed. It's a hardy plant, which can tolerate poor soil and dry conditions, it's known for its ability to spread quickly and can become invasive if left unmanaged. It's also used as forage for livestock and as a soil stabilizer.


Yorkshire Fog, also known as Holcus lanatus, is a hardy, perennial grass that is native to Europe and Asia. It is commonly found in meadows, pastures, and along roadsides, and is often considered a weed due to its ability to spread quickly and easily.

One of the key characteristics of Yorkshire Fog is its tall, thick stalks, which can grow up to four feet tall in ideal growing conditions. The leaves are wide and flat, and are a bluish-green color. The plant also produces small, inconspicuous flowers that bloom in the summer months.

Despite its reputation as a weed, Yorkshire Fog has several uses. It is often used as a forage grass for livestock, as it is high in protein and can provide a source of nutrition for animals during the winter months. It is also used in landscaping and gardening, as it is a hardy plant that can withstand a wide range of growing conditions.

Yorkshire Fog is also known for its ability to withstand drought conditions and soil that is low in nutrients. This makes it a great choice for planting in areas that are prone to dry spells, such as gardens that are located in regions with low rainfall.

It is important to note that while Yorkshire Fog is a hardy and versatile plant, it can be invasive in some areas. If you are considering planting Yorkshire Fog in your garden or landscape, it is important to keep an eye on its growth and spread to ensure that it does not become a problem.

Overall, Yorkshire Fog is a tough and resilient grass that is well suited for a wide range of growing conditions. Whether you are looking for a forage grass for your livestock, or you want to add a hardy and low-maintenance plant to your garden, Yorkshire Fog is definitely worth considering.

In addition to its practical uses, Yorkshire Fog also has some medicinal properties. The plant has been used in traditional medicine for centuries to treat a variety of ailments, including fever, inflammation, and skin conditions. The juice from the leaves of the plant can be applied topically to soothe skin irritations, and the roots can be made into a tea to help relieve fever and inflammation.

Another interesting feature of Yorkshire fog is it's tolerance to salt, it can be found in coastal areas, where it's able to tolerate the salty conditions. This makes it a great option for landscaping in coastal regions, as well as for planting in areas where soil salinization is a problem.

When it comes to growing Yorkshire Fog, it's relatively easy to care for. It prefers full sun to partial shade and can tolerate a wide range of soil types, as long as the soil is well-draining. It's also drought-tolerant, so it's ideal for low-water gardens. The plant can be propagated by seed, and it's also possible to divide established clumps to create new plants.

In summary, Yorkshire Fog is a versatile and hardy grass with a range of uses. It's a great option for forage, landscaping, and gardening, and it also has some medicinal properties. Its tolerance to drought and salt make it a valuable addition to any coastal area, and it's relatively easy to care for. If you're looking for a low-maintenance, versatile and tough grass, Yorkshire Fog is definitely worth considering.

Another benefit of Yorkshire Fog is its ability to improve soil quality. Its deep roots help to break up compacted soil and increase water infiltration. This can help to improve soil structure and fertility, making it a great option for planting in areas that have been damaged by overgrazing or other forms of land use.

Yorkshire Fog also has ornamental value, it's tall, thick stalks and bluish-green leaves create an interesting visual effect, especially when planted in large groups. It can be used as a natural hedge or a backdrop for other garden plants. The plant's flowers which are small, inconspicuous and bloom in the summer, can also add a touch of interest to a garden or meadow.

It's also worth noting that Yorkshire Fog is a popular food source for wildlife, particularly for large mammals such as deer, and small mammals such as rabbits and hares. This makes it a great option for planting in areas where wildlife is an important consideration.

In conclusion, Yorkshire Fog is a versatile and hardy grass with a wide range of uses. It's a great option for forage, landscaping, and gardening, and it also has some medicinal properties. Its tolerance to drought and salt make it a valuable addition to any coastal area, and it's relatively easy to care for. It's also known for its ability to improve soil quality, ornamental value and as a food source for wildlife. If you're looking for a low-maintenance, versatile and tough grass, Yorkshire Fog is definitely worth considering.


Yorkshire Fog filmed in many locations throughout 2023.


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