Aristida brainii Melderis

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Synonyms: Aristida serrulata sensu Stent & J.M. Rattray
Common names:
Status: Native
Annual, up to 50 cm. high, delicate. Culms erect, ascending, usually branched from the lower nodes, glabrous, smooth, 3-4-noded; nodes glabrous and smooth. Leaf-sheaths rather lax, keeled; the lower ones with some scattered long, delicate hairs; the upper ones glabrous and smooth. Ligule densely short-ciliolate; auricles ciliolate, often with a few long hairs; collar glabrous. Leaf-laminae up to 16 x 0·17 cm., densely ribbed, with marginal nerves and midrib more prominent, shortly pubescent on the nerves above, glabrous and smooth beneath. Panicle up to 20 cm. long, effuse; axis terete and glabrous, smooth in the lower part, subangular, scabrid in the upper; branches 1-2 at the nodes, subangular, slightly scabrid, divaricate, naked in the lower part, bearing 1-3 spikelets, with dark, shortly pubescent glandular patches in the axils. Spikelets delicate, greenish or purplish-brown, the lateral ones divaricate, on short pedicels (up to 1·5 mm. long). Glumes broad, unequal, 2-fid at the apex, 1-nerved, keeled; the inferior 6-7·5 mm. long, scabrid on the keel, otherwise glabrous and smooth, rarely slightly minutely pubescent towards the apex, with obtuse lobes at the apex with a very short awn (up to 0·8 mm. long) from a shallow sinus, exceeding the lobes; the superior 8·5-10 mm. long, nearly smooth on the keel, with acute lobes at the apex and with a very short awn (up to 0·5 mm. long) from a deep sinus, usually not exceeding the lobes. Lemma c. 8 mm. long, keeled, glabrous and smooth, sometimes mottled with purple, deeply grooved ventrally, with enrolled margins; callus c. 1 mm. long, subobtuse, densely pubescent; column absent; awns subequal, 1-1·5 cm. long, slightly dilated towards the base, scabrid; articulation absent.
Derivation of specific name:
Habitat: Ecological details not available
Altitude range: (metres)
Flowering time:
Worldwide distribution: Zimbabwe. Not known from elsewhere
Zimbabwe distribution: W
Growth form(s):
Endemic status: Endemic
Red data list status: Data deficient
Insects associated with this species:
Spot characters: Display spot characters for this species

Golding, J.S. (ed.) (2002). Zimbabwe Plant Red Data List. Southern African Plant Red Data Lists. SABONET 14 Page 181.

Launert, E. (1971). Poaceae Flora Zambesiaca 10(1) Pages 111 - 112.

Mapaura, A. (2002). Endemic Plant Species of Zimbabwe. Kirkia 18(1) Page 130.

Mapaura, A. & Timberlake, J. (eds) (2004). A checklist of Zimbabwean vascular plants Southern African Botanical Diversity Network Report No. 33 Sabonet, Pretoria and Harare Page 99.

Other sources of information about Aristida brainii:

External websites:

African Plants: A Photo Guide (Senckenberg): Aristida brainii
African Plant Database: Aristida brainii
BHL (Biodiversity Heritage Library): Aristida brainii
EOL (Encyclopedia of Life): Aristida brainii
GBIF (Global Biodiversity Information Facility): Aristida brainii
Google: Web - Images - Scholar
iNaturalist: Aristida brainii
IPNI (International Plant Names Index): Aristida brainii
JSTOR Plant Science: Aristida brainii
Mansfeld World Database of Agricultural and Horticultural Crops: Aristida brainii
Plants of the World Online: Aristida brainii
Tropicos: Aristida brainii
Wikipedia: Aristida brainii

Copyright: Mark Hyde, Bart Wursten, Petra Ballings and Meg Coates Palgrave, 2002-23

Hyde, M.A., Wursten, B.T., Ballings, P. & Coates Palgrave, M. (2023). Flora of Zimbabwe: Species information: Aristida brainii., retrieved 9 December 2023

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