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DELTA sample data

M. J. Dallwitz and L. Watson

Chloris O. Swartz

Including Actinochloris Steud., Agrostomia Cerv., Apogon Steud., Chloridopsis Hack., Chloropsis Kuntze, Chlorostis Raf., Geopogon Steud., Heterolepis Boiss., Leptochloris Kuntze, Phacellaria Steud., Trichloris Benth.

Habit, vegetative morphology. Annual, or perennial. Culms 10–300 cm high; herbaceous. Culm nodes glabrous. Leaf blades linear. Ligule a fringed membrane to a fringe of hairs.

Inflorescence. Plants bisexual, with bisexual spikelets. Inflorescence of spicate main branches (rarely a single raceme); not comprising ‘partial inflorescences’ and foliar organs. Spikelet-bearing axes persistent. Spikelets solitary, or paired; secund (on the dorsiventral rachis); not in distinct ‘long-and-short’ combinations.

Female-fertile spikelets, florets, fruit. Spikelets 1.8–5.5 mm long; compressed laterally; disarticulating above the glumes (the glumes usually persistent). Rachilla prolonged beyond the uppermost female-fertile floret. Hairy callus present (usually minute). Glumes two; very unequal (divergent); (the longer) usually shorter than the adjacent lemmas; awnless. Upper glume 1–4 nerved. Spikelets with incomplete florets. The incomplete florets distal to the female-fertile florets (at least one of these conspicuous – the spikelet ‘with two florets’). Female-fertile florets 1 (rarely 2). Lemmas entire (truncate), or incised; awned. Awns 1 (usually), or 3; from a sinus, or apical; non-geniculate. Lemmas carinate; without a germination flap; 1–7 nerved. Palea present; relatively long. Lodicules present; fleshy; glabrous. Stamens 3. Ovary glabrous. Stigmas 2; white, or red pigmented. Fruit small. Hilum short. Pericarp free to fused.

Photosynthetic pathway, leaf blade anatomy. C4; biochemical type PCK (6 species); XyMS+. Midrib conspicuous; with one bundle only, or having a conventional arc of bundles; with colourless tissue adaxially, or without colourless tissue adaxially. Many of the smallest vascular bundles unaccompanied by sclerenchyma, or all the vascular bundles accompanied by sclerenchyma.

Taxonomy, distribution. Chloridoideae; main chloridoid assemblage. About 55 species. Holarctic, Paleotropical, Neotropical, and Australian.

Anatomical references. Metcalfe 1960; this project.

Illustrations. • Inflorescences.


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, and distributions of character states within any set of taxa. See also Guidelines for using data taken from Web publications.


Cite this publication as: ‘Watson, L., and Dallwitz, M.J. 1998 onwards. DELTA sample data: descriptions, illustrations, identification, and information retrieval. Version: 19th October 2016. delta-intkey.com’.

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