Sp. Pl., 2, 1: 114 (1762) APNI
Slender, few-leaved annual, culms erect, to c. 70(–110) cm high. At least the lower leaves softly hairy; sheath often with decurved hairs; blade flat, to 20 cm long and 5 mm wide; ligule glabrous adaxially, pilose abaxially, truncate or erose, 1–2.5 mm long. Inflorescence a loose, narrowly ovate panicle, to c. 15 cm long, pedicels mostly shorter than spikelets. Spikelets erect, plumpish, slightly laterally compressed, 5–9-flowered, narrowly ovate (to nearly oblong at maturity), 12–16 mm long (excluding awns), glabrous, scaberulous to lightly pilose; lower glume 3-nerved, 4–6 mm long, upper glume 5–7-nerved, 4.5–7 mm long; lemma 6.5–8.3 mm long, (excluding the awn), membranous, obtuse to broadly acute at apex, initially usually entire but usually splitting to c. 1 mm deep with age; awn erect, 5–9 mm long, inserted c. 1 mm from apex of lemma. Flowers Nov.–Jan.
Apparently very rare in Victoria. Recorded only from weedy grassland near the Yarrowee River near Ballarat (1994), Ovens River (1891) and Hopkins River (1893).
The 1994 collection is from a site where the similar Bromus hordeaceus L. was abundant. While undoubtely uncommon, it is possible that B. racemosus has been overlooked in mixed populations in other areas of the State.