Evidence accumulated over the last decade has shown that allopolyploid genomes may undergo complex reticulate evolution. In this study, 13 accessions of tetraploid Elymus pendulinus were analyzed using two low-copy nuclear genes (RPB2 and PepC) and two regions of chloroplast genome (Rps16 and trnD-trnT). Previous studies suggested that Pseudoroegneria (St) and an unknown diploid (Y) were genome donors to E. pendulinus, and that Pseudoroegneria was the maternal donor. Our results revealed an extreme reticulate pattern, with at least four distinct gene lineages coexisting within this species that might be acquired through a possible combination of allotetraploidization and introgression from both within and outside the tribe Hordeeae. Chloroplast DNA data identified two potential maternal genome donors (Pseudoroegneria and an unknown species outside Hordeeae) to E. pendulinus. Nuclear gene data indicated that both Pseudoroegneria and an unknown Y diploid have contributed to the nuclear genome of E. pendulinus, in agreement with cytogenetic data. However, unexpected contributions from Hordeum and unknown aliens from within or outside Hordeeae to E. pendulinus without genome duplication were observed. Elymus pendulinus provides a remarkable instance of the previously unsuspected chimerical nature of some plant genomes and the resulting phylogenetic complexity produced by multiple historical reticulation events.