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Published In: Enumeratio Plantarum . . . 2: 285. 1805. (Enum. Pl.) Name publication detailView in BotanicusView in Biodiversity Heritage Library

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

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7. Fimbristylis Vahl

(Kral, 1971)

Plants annual or perennial. Aerial stems few to many per plant, erect to spreading, unbranched, usually strongly ribbed. Leaves basal and often 1–2 along the lower stems, the sheath apices thin, scarious, the margins entire or short-fringed, the leaf blades 0.5–2.0 mm wide, spreading to ascending, with usually strongly ridged veins, the margins curled inward or flat. Inflorescences terminal, subtended by 2 to several leaflike bracts, composed of 2–13 spikelets, these stalked and/or sessile in irregular umbels or headlike clusters. Florets few to many per spikelet, several-ranked in an overlapping spiral pattern, perfect. Perianth (bristles or scales) absent. Stamens 1–3. Styles usually expanded at the base during flowering but not persisting on the fruit as a tubercle. Stigmas 2–3. Ovaries and fruits naked, without a perigynium (saclike covering). Fruits 3-angled, somewhat flattened (biconvex), or nearly circular in cross-section. Two hundred to 250 species, widely distributed in tropical and warm-temperate regions of both the northern and southern hemispheres.


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1 Stigmas 3; fruits strongly 3-angled or nearly circular in cross-section (2)
+ Stigmas 2; fruits somewhat flattened (biconvex) or nearly circular in cross-section (3)
2 (1) Spikelets 3–7 mm long, lanceolate to narrowly elliptic in outline, pointed at the tip; fruits strongly 3-angled in cross-section 2 Fimbristylis autumnalis
+ Spikelets 2–4 mm long, broadly ovate to oblong or nearly circular in outline, rounded at the tip; fruits slightly 3-angled to nearly circular in cross-section 3 Fimbristylis littoralis Gaudich. var. littoralis
3 (1) Scales of spikelets pale green or translucent white to light tan; spikelets all sessile in headlike clusters, partially hidden by the highly elongate inflorescence bracts 5 Fimbristylis vahlii
+ Scales of spikelets dark brown to reddish brown; at least some of the spikelets usually short- to long-stalked, not hidden by the inflorescence bracts (4)
4 (3) Plants annual, lacking rhizomes; stamens 1–2; scales of spikelets glabrous 1 Fimbristylis annua
+ Plants perennial, with short, knotty rhizomes; stamens 3; scales of spikelets sparsely to densely pubescent with short, curly hairs 4 Fimbristylis puberula (Michx.) Vahl var. puberula
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