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Grasses of Thailand

A multi-authored floristic account of a major plant family in Thailand.
Collecting Poaceae in dry dipterocarp forest, Doi Inthanon, northern Thailand (Photo: D.A. Simpson)

The Flora of Thailand is a long term collaborative venture between institutes in Thailand, Europe and the USA to document around 10,000 species of flowering plants and ferns that occur within the country. Kew was one of the founder members of the Flora and continues to be a major contributor, with representation on the Editorial Board as well as preparing several family accounts. Of the remaining families to be completed Poaceae is the second largest, with an estimated 570 species. The account is being coordinated at Kew but it is very much a collaborative effort between 19 authors in institutes located in Thailand, Ireland and the UK. The work started in June 2004 and we estimate completion of the non-bambusoid grasses in 2012. Annual meetings are being held in Thailand, to bring authors together to report on progress and to keep up momentum. By November, 90% of the non-bambusoid account had been written.

Several authors have undertaken PhD or MSc studies on grass systematics and the preparation of species descriptions for the floristic account has formed part of their studies. All these authors have visited Kew at some time during their work. These form an integral part of the account.

After publication of the Flora account we intend to develop popular field guides to economically important species, common taxa and taxa of conservation importance.

Key papers published 2006-2011:

1. Traiperm, P., Boonkerd, T, Chantaranothai, P. & Simpson, D.A. (2011). Vegetative anatomy of subtribe Ischaeminae (Poaceae) in Thailand. Tropical Natural History 11(1): 39-54.
2. Traiperm, P., Boonkerd, T., Chantaranothai, P. & Simpson, D.A. (2010). A new species of Mnesithea (Poaceae) from Thailand. Kew Bulletin 65: 341-343.
3. Teerawatanon, A., Sungkaew S., & Hodkinson, T.R. (2009). Arundinella kokutensis (Poaceae, Arundinelleae), a new species from south-eastern Thailand. Kew Bulletin 64: 747-750
4. Teerawatanon, A. & Hodkinson, T.R. (2008). Jansenella griffithiana (Müll.Hal.) Bor (Gramineae/Poaceae): a new record for Thailand. Thai Forest Bulletin (Bot.) 36: 109-113.

Field guides
Conservation assessments

Project partners and collaborators

University of Dublin, Trinity College

Chulalongkorn University
Department of National Parks Wildlife and Plant Conservation
Kasetsart University
Khon Kaen University
King Rama IX Botanical Garden
Mahasarakham University
National Science Musuem Bangkok
Prince of Songkhla University
Queen Sirikit Botanic Garden

Project funders

University of Dublin, Trinity College

Department of National Parks, Wildlife and Plant Conservation
Kasetsart University
Queen Sirikit Botanical Garden
Royal Golden Jubilee Fund


Kew Tobu Fund

Project Department

Project Leader: