Phleum schoenoides Linn.
Annual; culms profusely branched at the base, at first prostrate, finally ascending, 1-30cm high. Leaf-blades broadly linear, 0.5-12cm long, 1-5mm wide, glaucous, tapering to an acuminate tip. Inflorescence ellipsoid or ovoid, 0.5-3cm long, embraced at the base by 2 inflated distichous sheaths. Spikelets lanceolate, 2.5-4mm long; glumes narrowly lanceolate, ± 2.5mm long, 1-nerved, stiffly ciliate on the keel; lemma lanceolate, as long as the spikelet; palea 2-nerved; anthers 3, 0.5-1mm long.
Fl.& Fr. Per.: July-August in the hills, September-November in the plains.
Type: Spain Lofling (LINN).
Distribution: Pakistan (Sind, Baluchistan, Punjab & Kashmir); Mediterranean region and Sudan eastwards to northern India; isolated records from Senegal, Mozambique, Malawi and Madagascar; introduced in North America.
Pricklegrass is found in moist places in the mountains and on mud-flats subject to seasonal flooding in the plains; also in desert and saline places.
Some recent unpublished work by Hammel suggests that, cytologically at least, Crypsis schoenoides is represented by two species, the other being Crypsis vaginiflora (Forssk.) Opiz. The morphological basis for this distinction is not yet clear and has not, therefore, been incorporated in this Flora.