Spermatophyta: Monocotyledonae: Poales

Poaceae - Grass family

Graminae

Bennett, K.E. (1980) Keys to Zimbabwean grass species. Kirkia 11(2) 169-286

Clayton, W.D. (1970) Poaceae Flora of Tropical East Africa Part 1

Clayton, W.D. (1989) Poaceae Flora Zambesiaca 10(3)

Clayton, W.D. & Renvoize, S.A. (1982) Poaceae Flora of Tropical East Africa Part 3

Clayton, W.D. & Renvoize, S.A. (1986) Genera Graminum. Grasses of the World. HMSO, London

Clayton, W.D. et al. (1974) Poaceae Flora of Tropical East Africa Part 2

Cope, T.A. (1999) Poaceae Flora Zambesiaca 10(2)

Cope, T.A. (2002) Poaceae Flora Zambesiaca 10(4)

Gibbs Russell, G.E. et al. (1990) Grasses of Southern Africa. National Botanical Institute, Pretoria

Launert, E. (1971) Poaceae Flora Zambesiaca 10(1)

Description of the family

Annual or perennial herbs, rarely woody, often with rhizomes or stolons. Culms usually cylindric, usually hollow but solid at the nodes. Leaves: alternate, 2-ranked, simple, consisting of sheath, ligule and lamina; sheath surrounding the stem, usually open; ligule usually present at junction of sheath and lamina, membranous, a row of hairs or 0; lamina linear to filiform, rarely lanceolate or ovate. Inflorescence consisting of numerous spikelets arranged in a spike, raceme or panicle. The basic unit of the inflorescence is the spikelet, consisting of a number of florets arranged distichously along an axis (rhachilla). At the base of the spikelet are 2 (rarely 0, 1 or more than 2) empty bracts (glumes). Each floret is enclosed within an outer bract (lemma) and an inner bracteole (palea). The palea is usually membranous and 2-keeled, the lemma is usually tougher and often awned. The lemma, palea and flowering parts are together called the floret. Flowers usually bisexual, but sometimes unisexual. Perianth represented by 2(–3) minute hyaline fleshy scales (lodicules). The base of the spikelet or floret may have a horny prolongation downwards (callus). Stamens (1-)3(-6); anthers versatile. Ovary superior, 1-locular with 1 ovule often attached to the adaxial side of the loculus, to a point or line visible in fruit as the hilum. Styles (1-)2(-3), generally with plumose stigmas. Fruit 1-seeded, usually a caryopsis, rarely with seed free from the pericarp.

Worldwide: 668 genera and 9,500 species, cosmopolitan, but especially tropical and northern temperate sub-arid areas.

Zimbabwe: 25 cultivated genera and 27 cultivated taxa.

Insects associated with this family:
Bicyclus safitza (Common bush brown) Food plant
Bicyclus safitza (Common bush brown (dry season form)) Food plant
Borbo borbonica (Olive-haired swift) Food plant
Melanitis leda (Common evening brown, Twilight brown) Food plant
Utetheisa pulchella (Crimson-speckled footman) Food plant
Briza maxima

Links to cultivated genera:     View: living plant images - herbarium specimen images - all images for this family

GenusContent
Arundo L.Description
Avena L.Description
Axonopus P. Beauv.Description
Bambusa Schreb.Description
Brachiaria (Trin.) Griseb.Description
Briza L.Description
Cenchrus L.Description
Chrysopogon Trin.Description
Coix L.Description
Cortaderia Stapf
Cymbopogon Spreng.Description
Dactyloctenium Willd.Description
Dichanthium WillemetDescription
Eleusine Gaertn.Description
Miscanthus AnderssonDescription
Oryza L.Description
Panicum L.Description
Phalaris L.Description
Pleioblastus Nakai
Pogonatherum P. Beauv.
Saccharum L.
Setaria P. Beauv.Description
Sorghum MoenchDescription
Triticum L.Description
Zea L.Description

Other sources of information about Poaceae:

Our websites:

Flora of Botswana: Poaceae
Flora of Caprivi: Poaceae
Flora of Malawi: Poaceae
Flora of Malawi: cultivated Poaceae
Flora of Mozambique: Poaceae
Flora of Mozambique: cultivated Poaceae
Flora of Zambia: Poaceae
Flora of Zambia: cultivated Poaceae
Flora of Zimbabwe: Poaceae

External websites:

GRIN (Germplasm Resources Information Network) taxonomy for plants report for Poaceae
Google: Web - Images - Scholar


Copyright: Mark Hyde, Bart Wursten, Petra Ballings and Meg Coates Palgrave, 2002-16

Hyde, M.A., Wursten, B.T., Ballings, P. & Coates Palgrave, M. (2016). Flora of Zimbabwe: Cultivated plants: Family page: Poaceae.
http://www.zimbabweflora.co.zw/cult/family.php?family_id=177, retrieved 3 December 2016

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