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Published In: Novosti Sistematiki Vysshchikh Rastenii 17: 52. 1980. (Novosti Sist. Vyssh. Rast.) Name publication detail

Project Name Data (Last Modified On 8/27/2009)
Acceptance : Accepted
Project Data     (Last Modified On 7/9/2009)
Status: Native


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7. Festuca subverticillata (Pers.) E.B. Alexeev (nodding fescue)

Pl. 177 a, b; Map 719

F. obtusa Biehler

Plants without rhizomes, forming loose tufts, green or dark green. Flowering stems 50–120 cm long, usually dark purple at the base. Leaf sheaths open nearly to the base, glabrous or less commonly hairy, persistent or sometimes rupturing between the veins, the ligule 0.3–1.0 mm long. Leaf blades 10–30 cm long, 3–10 mm wide, flat, without auricles, glabrous, roughened, or hairy on the upper surface. Inflorescences 10–30 cm long, open, the branches spreading, downwardly angled, or drooping at maturity, the lowermost branches with 2–7 spikelets toward the tip, these mostly widely spaced and not or only slightly overlapping. Spikelets 4–7 mm long, 2–4 mm wide, lanceolate before flowering (ovate to obovate at maturity), with 2–5 florets. Lower glume 2.0–3.5 mm long, narrowly lanceolate, sharply pointed at the tip. Upper glume 2.5–4.4 mm long, narrowly oblong‑elliptic, sharply pointed at the tip, 3‑nerved. Lemmas 3–5 mm long, oblong‑elliptic to slightly obovate, bluntly to sharply pointed at the tip, not toothed, 3‑nerved, the nerves usually very faint, roughened. Anthers 1.0–1.6(–2.2) mm long. Fruits 3.5–4.2 mm long, yellowish brown to brown. 2n=42. April–June.

Scattered nearly throughout Missouri (eastern U.S. and adjacent Canada west to North Dakota and Oklahoma). Mesic to dry upland forests, ledges of bluffs, and banks of streams; also shaded, disturbed areas.

For a discussion of the separation of this species from the closely related F. paradoxa, see the treatment of that species. Festuca subverticillata is a characteristic species of rocky, wooded slopes in the Ozarks.



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