7. Melica longiligulata Z. L. Wu, Acta Phytotax. Sin. 30: 171. 1992.
长舌臭草 chang she chou cao
Perennial, loosely tufted, with slender rhizomes. Culms wiry, up to 60 cm tall, 0.7–1 mm in diam., 3–5-noded. Leaves all cauline, leaf sheaths purple, longer than internodes, asperulous-puberulous between veins, veins smooth; leaf blades narrowly linear, loosely rolled when dry, 8–20 cm × 2–2.5 mm, abaxial surface scaberulous, adaxial surface closely ribbed, ribs scabrid; ligule cylindrical, 3–5 mm, soon splitting into lanceolate lobes. Panicle narrow, 10–18 cm; branches 2–4 per node, suberect, branched, longest ca. 6 cm. Spikelets ovate, 5–7 mm, glumes purplish and florets pale green, fertile florets 2 or 3, 1 or 2 smaller sterile florets raised on ca. 2 mm internode; glumes unequal, shorter than adjacent florets, lower glume ovate-oblong, 3–3.7 mm, upper glume elliptic, 4–5.5 mm, both acute; lemmas narrowly lanceolate, lowest 4.3–5 mm, herbaceous, granular-scaberulous, 7-veined, upper margins and apex broadly membranous, apex obtuse; palea keels ciliolate above middle. Anthers ca. 2 mm. Fl. Jul.
* Dry mountain slopes, among shrubs; 3300–3400 m. Sichuan.
This is a delicate species, with very slender culms and narrow leaf blades. The long ligule resembles that of the more robust Melica schuetzeana, which has similar spikelets with purple glumes and green florets, but slightly longer spikelet parts. Both these species are known from very few gatherings.