GrassBase - The Online World Grass Flora


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

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

Pennisetum setaceum

HABIT Perennial; caespitose. Culms 20–130 cm long. Ligule a fringe of hairs. Leaf-blades convolute; 15–30 cm long; 1–3 mm wide; stiff; glaucous. Leaf-blade midrib widened.

INFLORESCENCE Inflorescence a panicle.

Panicle spiciform; linear; 6–30 cm long. Primary panicle branches accrescent to a central axis; with sessile scars on axis. Panicle axis angular; glabrous, or pilose; bearing deciduous spikelet clusters.

Spikelets subtended by an involucre. Fertile spikelets sessile and pedicelled; 1–3 in the cluster; 1 sessile. Involucre composed of bristles; oblong; 12–26 mm long; base bluntly stipitate (1–3mm); base pubescent. Involucral bristles deciduous with the fertile spikelets; numerous; with an outer whorl of thinner bristles; with one conspicuously longer bristle; 16–40 mm long; terete; flexible; plumose.

FERTILE SPIKELETS Spikelets comprising 1 basal sterile florets; 1 fertile florets; without rhachilla extension, or with a barren rhachilla extension. Spikelets lanceolate; dorsally compressed; 4.5–6.5 mm long; falling entire; deciduous with accessory branch structures.

GLUMES Glumes one the lower absent or obscure, or two; dissimilar; shorter than spikelet; thinner than fertile lemma. Lower glume ovate, or orbicular; 0.1–0.33 length of spikelet; hyaline; without keels; 0 -veined. Lower glume lateral veins absent. Lower glume apex obtuse. Upper glume lanceolate, or ovate; 0.25–0.66 length of spikelet; membranous; without keels; 1 -veined. Upper glume lateral veins absent. Upper glume surface asperulous. Upper glume apex acute, or acuminate; mucronate.

FLORETS Basal sterile florets male, or barren; with palea, or without significant palea. Lemma of lower sterile floret lanceolate, or ovate; 1 length of spikelet; membranous; 1–3(–5) -veined; scaberulous; rough on veins; acuminate; mucronate. Fertile lemma oblong; 4.5–6.5 mm long; membranous; without keel; 5 -veined. Lemma margins flat. Lemma apex acute.

FLOWER Lodicules absent. Anthers 3; 2.5–3.5 mm long; anther tip smooth. Styles connate below.

DISTRIBUTION Europe: southeastern. Africa: north, Macaronesia, west tropical, northeast tropical, east tropical, southern tropical, and south. Asia-temperate: western Asia and Arabia. Asia-tropical: Indo-China and Malesia. Australasia: Australia and New Zealand. Pacific: southwestern and north-central.

NOTES Paniceae. FTEA.

Please cite this publication as detailed in How to Cite Version: 3rd February 2016.