Giant Wildrye (Formerly Leymus condensatus)
Can be found on almost any front country trail. It is probably most common on Jesusita where it is intermittant from Steven’s Park up to just below Inspiration. Less common on the other side down to Tunnel. Only a few plants on Tunnel (near the powerlines). More common on the east side of Rattlesnake Creek than the west. On West Fork of Cold Spring from the stream crossing up to where the trail leaves the creek. Seen on Cold Spring trail, east fork, near the upper reaches of the creek, and also above Montecito Peak in a rain gully. Also seen on Las Canoas Rd in a gully, in the valley around Arroyo Burro creek on Los Positas (down near Cliff).
It appears to like sunny spots with access to water. I suspect that the Jesusita Fire opened up Jesusita trail for it.
This is a very tall grass. Jepson says it may grow 1-3m high, and Clifton Smith 8-10ft. The tallest one I have measured so far is 325cm (almost 11ft).
The seed is edible, though small, and may be ground into flour.