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The grass genera of the world

L. Watson, T.D. Macfarlane, and M.J. Dallwitz

Himalayacalamus Stapleton

Habit, vegetative morphology. Perennial; rhizomatous. The flowering culms leafless, or leafy. Culms without nodal roots, 200–900 cm high; woody and persistent; branched above. Buds from which the primary culm branches arise (where recorded) 3. Primary branches (5–)11–20. The branching dendroid. Culm nodes flush or swollen, not ridged. Culm leaf sheaths present; deciduous; leaving a persisten girdle, or not leaving a persistent girdle; usually not conspicuously auriculate. Culm leaves with conspicuous blades. Culm leaf blades linear, or lanceolate, or triangular. Leaves non-auriculate; without auricular setae. Leaf blades with conspicuous midrib, linear, or ovate-lanceolate, or elliptic; pseudopetiolate; obscurely cross veined to without cross venation; demarcated, disarticulating from the sheaths (rarely), or persistent. Contra-ligule present, or absent.

Reproductive organization. Plants bisexual, all with bisexual spikelets; with hermaphrodite florets. The spikelets hermaphrodite.

Inflorescence. Inflorescence indeterminate; with pseudospikelets, or without pseudospikelets; of spicate main branches (racemes), or paniculate; open; spatheate; a complex of ‘partial inflorescences’ and intervening foliar organs. Spikelet-bearing axes ‘racemes’, or paniculate. Spikelets solitary; not secund; pedicellate.

Female-fertile spikelets. Spikelets morphologically ‘conventional’, or unconventional; 7–12 mm long; where recorded, lanceolate; compressed laterally; disarticulating above the glumes; disarticulating between the florets; with conventional internode spacings (the internodes apparent). Rachilla prolonged beyond the uppermost female-fertile floret; the rachilla extension with incomplete florets, or naked. Hairy callus present.

Glumes two; more or less equal; shorter than the spikelets; hairy, or hairless; pointed; muticous or mucronate, awnless; non-carinate; membranous or chartaceous, similar. Lower glume shorter than the lowest lemma (about half as long); 3 nerved, or 5 nerved. Upper glume 3 nerved, or 5 nerved. Spikelets with female-fertile florets only, or with incomplete florets. The incomplete florets if present, distal to the female-fertile florets. The distal incomplete florets if present, 1; merely underdeveloped; awnless.

Female-fertile florets 1, or 2. Lemmas lanceolate or ovate; chartaceous, similar in texture to the glumes to decidedly firmer than the glumes; smooth (unwrinkled, not grooved); not becoming indurated; entire; pointed; muticous or mucronate, awnless; hairy (woolly), or hairless; non-carinate; 3 nerved, or 5 nerved, or 7 nerved. Palea present; relatively long (equalling the lemma); not convolute; entire, or apically notched; awnless, without apical setae, or with apical setae (via excurent keel veins); 2-nerved, or several nerved; keel-less, or 2-keeled. Lodicules present; 3; ciliate, or glabrous. Stamens 3. Ovary apically glabrous; without a conspicuous apical appendage (where recorded). Stigmas 3.

Fruit, embryo and seedling. Fruit not apically appendaged, oblong or ellipsoid. Pericarp fused.

Abaxial leaf blade epidermis. Costal silica bodies saddle shaped.

Classification. Watson & Dallwitz (1994): not described separately. Soreng et al. (2015): Bambusoideae; Arundinarodae; Arundinarieae; Arundinariinae. 8 species.

Distribution, phytogeography, ecology. Temperate and tropical Asia, Australasia.

Special comments. Anatomical data wanting. Illustrations. • H. falconeri, as Thamnocalamus (with Phyllostachys spp.: Camus, 1913). • Abbreviations for Camus (1913) figures


We advise against extracting comparative information from the descriptions. This is much more easily achieved using the DELTA data files or the interactive key, which allows access to the character list, illustrations, full and partial descriptions, diagnostic descriptions, differences and similarities between taxa, lists of taxa exhibiting or lacking specified attributes, distributions of character states within any set of taxa, geographical distribution, and classifications. See also Guidelines for using data taken from Web publications.


Cite this publication as: ‘Watson, L., Macfarlane, T.D., and Dallwitz, M.J. 1992 onwards. The grass genera of the world: descriptions, illustrations, identification, and information retrieval; including synonyms, morphology, anatomy, physiology, phytochemistry, cytology, classification, pathogens, world and local distribution, and references. Version: 13th November 2017. delta-intkey.com/grass’.

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