Posted by: Sandy Steinman | December 8, 2012

Alien Cheatgrass Source Of Larger And More Frequent Wildfires

Cheatgrass or Drooping Brome Bromus tectorum is an alien and invasive bunchgrass from Europe, southwestern Asia and northern Africa. It is a short-lived annual that is dead most of the year providing abundant fuel creating larger and more frequent wildfires in the American West. Cheatgrass fires have resulted in the destruction of sagebrush, pinyon-juniper woodlands and other native plants.

Researchers have found that cheatgrass covered 6 % of the land but 13% of the burned lands in areas of the Great Basin. Cheatgrass lands burned four times more frequently than natives and twice as often as other plants in comparable areas. One data base revealed that cheatgrass was involved in 39 of the 50 biggest fires between 2000 and 2009.

To learn more go to:

LA Times Invasive cheatgrass fuels bigger, more frequent wildfires –

ScienceDaily Invasive grass fuels increase fire activity in the West

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