Eragrostis ciliaris (L.) R. Br.

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Synonyms: Eragrostis arenicola sensu B.K. Simon, non C.E.Hubb.
Eragrostis ciliaris var. brachystachya Boiss.
Eragrostis ciliaris var. latifolia Hack.
Poa ciliaris L.
Common names:
Status: Native
Loosely caespitose annual; culms up to 60(75) cm tall, erect or ascending, usually unbranched, glabrous at the nodes, eglandular; leaf sheaths eglandular; ligule a line of hairs; leaf laminas 5–20 cm × 1–3(5) mm, linear, flat or involute, glabrous or with scattered long silky hairs, scaberulous, somewhat firm.Panicle 4–20 cm long, woolly, narrow and spike-like but often lobed and interrupted, the spikelets densely clustered on pedicels 2–4 mm long, the primary branches not in whorls, terminating in a fertile spikelet, glabrous in the axils, eglandular.Spikelets 2–4.5 × c. 2 mm, ovate, strongly laterally compressed, 6–12-flowered, the florets disarticulating from the apex downwards, the rhachilla fragile; glumes subequal, 0.7–1.4 mm long, reaching to beyond the middle of the adjacent lemmas, lightly keeled, narrowly lanceolate or narrowly oblong-lanceolate in profile, scabrid on the keel, acute at the apex; lemmas 0.9–1.5 mm long, keeled, oblong-elliptic in profile, membranous with distinct lateral nerves, widely diverging from the rhachilla (greater than 45°), those in opposite rows not imbricate, the rhachilla visible between them, purplish, with a few short stiff hairs on the keel below (most apparent in the uppermost lemmas), otherwise smooth, broadly obtuse and ± obscurely mucronate at the apex; palea glabrous on the flanks, the keels slender, wingless, tuberculate-ciliate with hairs 0.6–0.7 mm long; anthers 2, 0.2–0.4 mm long.Caryopsis 0.3–0.5 mm long, elliptic.
Derivation of specific name:
Habitat: Grassland on river banks and swamp margins, and on coastal and lake-shore dunes, in sandy soils; also a common weed of disturbed ground, old cultivation and roadsides
Altitude range: (metres) Up to 1200 m
Flowering time:
Worldwide distribution: Tropical and southern Africa, through Arabia and the Mascarene Islands to India, and in tropical America
Zimbabwe distribution: N,W,C,E,S
Growth form(s):
Endemic status:
Red data list status:
Insects associated with this species:
Spot characters: Display spot characters for this species

Cope, T.A. (1999). Poaceae Flora Zambesiaca 10(2) Pages 69 - 70.

Jackson, G. & Wiehe, P.O. (1958). An Annotated Check List of Nyasaland Grasses The Government Printer, Zomba, Nyasaland Page 39.

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 103.

Poilecot, P. (2007). Eragrostis species of Zimbabwe Éditions Quae,Versailles, France Pages 66 - 67. (Includes a picture).

Setshogo, M.P. (2005). Preliminary checklist of the plants of Botswana. Sabonet Report no. 37. Sabonet, Pretoria and Gaborone Page 136.

Other sources of information about Eragrostis ciliaris:

Our websites:

Flora of Botswana: Eragrostis ciliaris
Flora of Caprivi: cultivated Eragrostis ciliaris
Flora of Malawi: Eragrostis ciliaris
Flora of Mozambique: Eragrostis ciliaris
Flora of Zambia: Eragrostis ciliaris

External websites:

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

Copyright: Mark Hyde, Bart Wursten, Petra Ballings and Meg Coates Palgrave, 2002-24

Hyde, M.A., Wursten, B.T., Ballings, P. & Coates Palgrave, M. (2024). Flora of Zimbabwe: Species information: Eragrostis ciliaris., retrieved 26 May 2024

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