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The grass genera of the world

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

Sirochloa S. Dransfield

~ Schizostachyum

Type species: S. parvifolia (Munro) S. Dransf.

Habit, vegetative morphology. Perennial; caespitose. Culms 250–300 cm high; woody and persistent; cylindrical (the internodes c. 22 cm long). Primary branches 4–10. The branching dendroid. Culm leaf sheaths present. Rhizomes short, pachymorph. Leaves auriculate (the auricles falcate, the aural hairs ciliate). Leaf blades lanceolate (acuminate); broad to narrow; 2.5–9 cm long, 6–10 mm wide; pseudopetiolate; with 4–6 secondary veins. Ligule an unfringed membrane. Contra-ligule absent.

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

Inflorescence. Inflorescence indeterminate; with pseudospikelets (with basal axillary buds); comprising untidy tufts clustered at the nodes; spatheate; a complex of ‘partial inflorescences’ and intervening foliar organs (with glumaceous subtending bracts and prophylls beneath lateral spikelets). Spikelets sessile.

Female-fertile spikelets. Spikelets unconventional; lanceolate; compressed laterally; disarticulating above the glumes; disarticulating between the florets. Rachilla prolonged beyond the uppermost female-fertile floret; the rachilla extension with incomplete florets.

Glumes persistent, two, or several (2–3); shorter than the spikelets; hairy to hairless (glabrous to pilose); awnless; ovate-acuminate, similar. Spikelets with incomplete florets. The incomplete florets distal to the female-fertile florets. The distal incomplete florets 1; merely underdeveloped (rudimentary); awnless. Spikelets without proximal incomplete florets.

Female-fertile florets 1. Lemmas ovate; chartaceous, similar in texture to the glumes; not becoming indurated; entire; pointed; long-acuminate, awned; non-carinate; 7–9 nerved. Palea present; not convolute; apically notched to deeply bifid; chartaceous, textured like the lemma. Stamens 6. Ovary with a conspicuous apical appendage. The appendage long, stiff and tapering. Stigmas 3.

Fruit, embryo and seedling. Pericarp thin; brittle, free.

Classification. Watson & Dallwitz (1994): not described separately. Soreng et al. (2015): Bambusoideae; Bambusodae; Bambuseae; Hickeliinae. 1 species (S. parvifolia).

Distribution, phytogeography, ecology. Madagascar, Comoros and Mayotte.

References, etc. Morphological/taxonomic: Clayton et al. (2016), Grassbase.

Special comments. Anatomical data wanting.


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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