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FOC | Family List | FOC Vol. 22 | Poaceae | Cynodon

2. Cynodon dactylon (Linnaeus) Persoon, Syn. Pl. 1: 85. 1805.

狗牙根 gou ya gen

Perennial, stoloniferous, also with slender scaly rhizomes, sward forming. Culms slender, 10–40 cm tall. Leaf sheaths bearded at mouth, otherwise glabrous or thinly pilose; leaf blades linear, short and narrow, 1–12 cm, 1–4 mm wide, usually glabrous, apex subacute; ligule a line of hairs. Racemes digitate, (2–)3–6, 2–6 cm, straight or gently curved, rather stiff, spreading; spikelets overlapping by 1/2–2/3 their length. Spikelets 2–2.7 mm; rachilla extension ca. 1 mm, sometimes with minute rudimentary floret at apex; glumes linear-lanceolate, often purplish, usually more than half as long as floret, 1.5–2 mm, 1-veined, keel scabrous, thickened; lemma as long as spikelet, silky villous along keel, hairs straight, otherwise glabrous or lateral veins thinly villous, apex subacute; palea glabrous, keels scaberulous. Anthers more than 1 mm. Caryopsis subterete, scarcely laterally compressed. Fl. and fr. nearly all the year. 2n = 18, 36.

Open disturbed situations, roadsides, field margins, cultivated as a lawn grass; sea level to 2500 m. Fujian, Gansu, Guangdong, Hainan, Hubei, Jiangsu, Shaanxi, Shanxi, Sichuan, Taiwan, Yunnan, Zhejiang [tropical and warm-temperate regions of the world].

This is the most widely used lawn grass in warm parts of the world, and it is also an important pasture grass (Bermuda Grass). It is extremely variable and it will readily hybridize with some other Cynodon species.

1 Spikelet with 1 bisexual floret.   2a var. dactylon
+ Spikelet with 2 bisexual florets.   2b var. biflorus


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