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FOC | Family List | FOC Vol. 22 | Poaceae

140. Muhlenbergia Schreber in Linnaeus, Gen. Pl., ed. 8. 1: 44. 1789.

乱子草属 luan zi cao shu

Authors: Zhen-lan Wu & Paul M. Peterson

Perennial, usually with creeping scaly rhizomes. Culms erect, ascending or decumbent at base. Leaf blades linear to narrowly lanceolate; ligule membranous, sometimes minutely ciliolate. Inflorescence an open or contracted panicle. Spikelets with 1 floret, lanceolate, slightly laterally compressed, rachilla disarticulating above glumes; glumes shorter than or equal to lemma, subequal or the upper shorter, thin, usually 1-veined or the lower veinless, persistent; callus small, obtuse; lemma 3-veined, membranous, dark green mottled with dark gray, laxly pilose toward base on abaxial surface, awned from acute apex or from between two minute teeth; awn straight or flexuose; palea equal to the lemma, membranous. Caryopsis usually fusiform, rarely ellipsoid. x = 10.

About 155 species: mainly SW North America and Mexico, also Central and South America and SE Asia; six species in China.

Muhlenbergia duthieana Hackel (Oesterr. Bot. Z. 52: 11. 1902) has recently been reported from Yunnan (Fl. Yunnan. 9: 467. 2003). It is a loosely tufted species lacking rhizomes, with a dense, narrow panicle, and spikelets distinguished by their long glumes, at least 4/5 as long as the spikelet. Outside China it is known from montane forests in the Himalayas, from Pakistan to Nepal.

Many species of this genus are good fodder plants.

1 Culms decumbent or ascending at base; plants usually without creeping rhizomes, rarely with short rhizomes   (2)
+ Culms erect or ascending; plants with long, creeping, scaly rhizomes   (3)
2 (1) Glumes 1.5–2.2 mm; culms decumbent at base.   1 M. japonica
+ Glumes 3–4 mm; culms ascending at base.   2 M. himalayensis
3 (1) Glumes 0.5–1.2 mm, 1/4–1/3 length of lemma, apex obtuse.   3 M. huegelii
+ Glumes 1.5–4 mm, 1/2–4/5 length of lemma, apex acute or acuminate   (4)
4 (3) Culms with many branches in the upper part; spikelets ca. 3 mm; glumes 1/2–2/3 length of spikelet; anthers ca. 0.5 mm.   4 M. ramosa
+ Culms without branches in the upper part; spikelets 3–5 mm; glumes 2/3–4/5 length of spikelet; anthers 1–2 mm   (5)
5 (4) Anthers 1.5–2 mm; spikelets 4–5 mm; inflorescence branches appressed with few spikelets; leaf blades 2–4 mm wide.   5 M. hakonensis
+ Anthers ca. 1 mm; spikelets 3–4 mm; inflorescence branches loosely ascending with many spikelets; leaf blades 3–6 mm wide.   6 M. curviaristata

Lower Taxa


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