Vegetative Growth
Flowering Plant

Smaller Catstail / Small Timothy


(Phleum bertolonii)

A leafy perennial species found throughout the UK. It grows on low lands to foothills and can be found in old pasture and hedgerows. Normally thought of as a smaller, lower yielding relative of Timothy. Although valued as a forage plant for livestock, it can also form a useful compact turf.


Grazing, cutting or amenity.


It is a perennial grass.


A useful part of permanent pasture, it is highly palatable to livestock. It can also be used to form a turf and bind verges and embankments together with its leafy stolons.

Frost Tolerance

Good frost tolerance.

Sowing Rate Advice

8kgs per acre / 20kgs per ha.

A particularly small seed.

Mixture Sowing Rate Advice

1kg per acre / 2.5kg per ha.

A small seed, so a small quantity can provide plenty of plants.

Ideal Sowing Time

Sowing in warm soils from May to September will encourage quick germination and establishment.

Distinguishing characteristics


This seed is ovate to oval in shape and light grey to white in colour. It has a smooth and papery texture. It is 2mm in length.

Vegetative State

Flowering Plant

Flowering Plant
The plant is green to greyish green in colour, with finely pointed flat but thin leaves. The leaf margins are minutely rough to the touch, but hairless. The ligule can be up to 4mm in length, finishing in a membranous shape. Each panicle is dense and spike like, with a cylindrical shape. It differs from the more robust Timothy plant by being shorter in length, typically 1-6 cm. It is a whitish green in colour, tinged with purple. The basal leaves of each culm can become a dark brown in colour, often the base and internodes are swollen or tuberous. It can reach from 20 - 50 cm in height, again shorter than Timothy.

Additional Info

Flowers from June - August. Generally a smaller, slighter version of Timothy.

Works well with

It can be combined with traditional, less aggressive grasses like crested dogstail, smooth stalk meadow grass and sheeps fescue for permanent pasture mixtures or wild flower mixtures, occasionally used in amenity and equine surfaces as it regenerates quickly after damage.

Buy Smaller Catstail / Small Timothy Straight

You can find Smaller Catstail / Small Timothy in the following mixtures