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Published In: Systema Vegetabilium 2: 95. 1817. (Syst. Veg. (ed. 15 bis)) Name publication detailView in BotanicusView in Biodiversity Heritage Library

Project Name Data (Last Modified On 9/1/2009)
Acceptance : Accepted
Project Data     (Last Modified On 7/9/2009)
Status: Native


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1. Fimbristylis annua (All.) Roem. & Schult.

Pl. 77 j, k; Map 286

Plants annual, tufted, lacking rhizomes. Stems few to many, 5–30 cm long, erect to spreading, glabrous or less commonly minutely hairy. Leaves with blades 2–15 cm long, glabrous or hairy, especially along the usually flat margins, the top of the sheath with a ligule consisting of a line of short hairs. Inflorescences usually umbels, sometimes partially with compound umbels, the 2–4 bracts shorter than to about twice as long as the inflorescence, at least some of the spikelets usually short- to long-stalked, not hidden by the inflorescence bracts. Spikelets 3–8 mm long, lanceolate to ovate or less commonly oblong in outline, usually pointed at the tip, the scales 1.1–1.4 mm long, broadly oblong to ovate, the tip pointed or rounded, the midvein rarely extended past the scale tip as a short point, glabrous, dark brown to reddish brown with thinner, lighter, narrow margins, the midvein usually green. Stamens 1–2. Stigmas 2, the style usually fringed below the branches. Fruits 0.9–1.2 mm long, obovate in outline, slightly flattened (biconvex) in cross-section, the surface reticulate, ribbed with 9–25 vertical rows of cells, sometimes also sparsely warty along the ribs, light yellow to tan, often somewhat iridescent. 2n=30. June–October.

Widely scattered in Missouri, south of the Missouri River (North America to South America, Caribbean; also in the Old World tropics and subtropics). Prairies, moist areas of glades, and margins of ponds, lakes, streams, and rivers, usually in sandy or gravelly soils, often on acidic substrates.

This species is sometimes treated as a temperate variant of the widespread, tropical F. dichotoma (L.) Vahl, a more robust perennial with stiffer leaves and usually smoother fruits.



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