GrassBase - The Online World Grass Flora


W.D. Clayton, M.S. Vorontsova, K.T. Harman & H. Williamson

© Copyright The Board of Trustees, Royal Botanic Gardens, Kew.

Welcome to GrassBase - Descriptions

These pages present a set of detailed morphological descriptions of all grass species. The data set is a database that has been developed over many years and is stored in DELTA format.

You can browse or print out descriptions or use them to check identifications, write floral treatments, interactively identify species and also as the basis of further taxonomic work.

By downloading the data set together with appropriate software you will also be able to identify species interactively.

Feel free to use the information presented here, you can find out how by reading the documentation (see the right hand menu) and please remember to cite us in any work you produce from this data.

What does this site do?

This site presents good florastyle descriptions for all grass species. You can browse them or use them to identify grass species interactively. You can also download our synonymy database which will allow you to find the accepted name, synonyms and distribution for a grass species using any of its synonyms.

Who should use this site?

The anticipated audience is broad. We envisage that the site will help people from amateur enthusiasts to professional taxonomists obtain up to date and accurate detailed descriptions of grass species from anywhere in the world and to use this information to identify specimens.

What information is presented?

These descriptions are taken from the available literature, including flora accounts and original authors descriptions, supplemented in some cases by consulting herbarium specimens. We are aware that many of these descriptions could be improved and we encourage you to check our descriptions and to let us know of any amendments or corrections that we can make. Please see the "How to make a contribution page" for details of how to do this. With your help we will be able to turn this into a truly powerful system.


Generic Index
Index of all accepted grass names with links to the text descriptions.
Species Index
Index of all accepted grass names with links to the text descriptions.
Search for a Species
Search page that lets you search for part or all of a name. Results provide a link to the text descriptions.
Identification / Interactive Key / Query Data
Provides a link that launches our interactive key. This currently requires that you have specific software installed on your PC to use it.


The descriptions from database is can also be accessed from the World Grass Species Synonymy database which additionally provides a complete guide to the nomenclature of the World's grasses, as well as produce reports such as regional checklists.