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Key to families | Table of families and genera

Specimen numbers are hyperlinked to records in the Consortium of California Herbaria data view where possible. Taxa are hyperlinked to entries in the Jepson Interchange via the "[Online Interchange]" link.


Annual, perennial herb, cespitose, sometimes rhizomatous. Stem: ascending to erect, 1–10 dm. Leaf: cauline or mostly basal, fragrant; auricles present or not; ligule membranous; blade flat or rolled, glabrous or hairy. Inflorescence: panicle- or spike-like. Spikelet: subsessile, laterally compressed; glumes > florets, = or not, tip acute, 1- or 3-veined; florets 3, lower 2 sterile or staminate, upper bisexual, breaking apart above glumes, florets falling as 1 unit; lemma of lower florets > upper floret, tip 2-forked or -lobed, hairy, 3-veined, awned at or below middle or awn 0; fertile lemma 3–7-veined, glabrous or hairy, awn 0; palea 0 in lower florets, present and < lemma in fertile floret, 1-veined.
about 50 species: temperate Eurasia, America, Africa, Oceania, subantarctic. (Greek: flower + yellow, referring to golden color of mature inflorescence) [Allred & Barkworth 2003 FNANM 25:758–764] As treated here, the genus including Hierochloe, which is readily distinguishable in North America, but not in Asia and southern hemisphere. Fresh leaves of some species used for fragrance in churches on saints' days and as incense by Native Americans. Anthoxanthum hirtum (Schrank) Y. Schouten & Veldcamp reported from northern California; records lacking.
Unabridged references: [Schouten & Veldkamp 1985 Blumea 30:319–351; Weimarck 1971 Bot Not 124:129–175]

Key to Anthoxanthum

1. Glumes unequal, lower glumes 1-veined, ± 1/2 upper glumes; 2 lower floret awns 3–10 mm

2. Annual; lower sterile lemma awn bent ..... A. aristatum subsp. aristatum

2' Perennial herb; lower sterile lemma awn straight ..... A. odoratum

1' Glumes ± equal, generally 3-veined; 2 lower floret awn 0

3. Upper leaf blades ± spreading; lower lemma hairy, often papillate ..... A. nitens subsp. nitens

3' Upper leaf blades generally stiffly erect; lemma mostly glabrous ..... A. occidentale


Citation for the whole project: Jepson Flora Project (eds.) [year] Jepson eFlora, [accessed on month, day, year]
Citation for an individual treatment: [Author of taxon treatment] [year]. [Taxon name] in Jepson Flora Project (eds.) Jepson eFlora, [URL for treatment]. Accessed on [month, day, year].
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