Jepson Flora Project: Jepson Interchange    

link to manual TREATMENT FROM THE JEPSON MANUAL (1993) previous taxon | next taxon
Jepson Interchange (more information)
©Copyright 1993 by the Regents of the University of California
For up-to-date information about California vascular plants, visit the Jepson eFlora.



James P. Smith, Jr., except as specified

Annual to bamboo-like; roots generally fibrous
Stem generally round, hollow; nodes swollen, solid
Leaves alternate, 2-ranked, generally linear; sheath generally open; ligule membranous or hairy, at blade base
Inflorescence various (of generally many spikelets)
Spikelet: glumes generally 2; florets (lemma, palea, flower) 1–many; lemma generally membranous, sometimes glume-like; palea generally ± transparent, ± enclosed by lemma
Flower generally bisexual, minute; stamens generally 3; stigmas generally 2, generally plumose
Fruit: achene-like grain
Genera in family: 650–900 genera; ± 10,000 species: worldwide; greatest economic importance of any family (wheat, rice, maize, millet, sorghum, sugar cane, forage crops, ornamental, weeds; thatching, weaving, building materials)
Reference: [Hitchcock 1951 Manual grasses US, USDA Misc Publ 200; Clayton & Renvoise 1986 Kew Bull Add Series 13]
See Glossary p. 26 for illustrations of general family characteristics. Generally wind-pollinated.


Robert Webster

Annual, perennial herb
Stems decumbent to erect
Leaves basal and cauline; sheath glabrous or hairy; ligule generally < 1 mm, membrane hairy-fringed; blade generally flat
Inflorescence panicle-like, ± dense; 1° branches spreading to appressed; 2° branches appressed; spikelets many, 1–2 per node, short-stalked to subsessile, on one side of axis
Spikelet lanceolate, ± compressed, generally green, falling as 1 unit; glumes strongly unequal, lower glume generally 0, fused to spikelet base to form a disk- or cup-like ring between stalk and upper glume, upper glume ± = spikelet; florets 2, lower floret sterile, generally acuminate, palea 0, upper floret fertile, lemma firm or hard, generally wrinkled, margin inrolled, tip short-pointed to awned
Species in genus: ± 30 species: warm temp, tropical, worldwide
Etymology: (Latin: woolly grass)
Reference: [Shaw & Webster 1987 Sida 12:165–207]


E. contracta Hitchc.

Stem 2–10 dm; nodes 2–5
Leaf: sheath 4–8 cm, glabrous to short-hairy; blade generally 8–12 cm, 2–8 mm wide, upper surface generally short-hairy
Inflorescence: main axis 6–20 cm; 1° branches 1.5–4.5(6) cm; spikelets generally 1 per node; stalk = or < 1 mm
Spikelet 3.5–4.5 mm, ± 1–2 mm wide, becoming purple; lower glume ± = spikelet; lower floret lemma 3–7-veined; upper floret ± 0.7 X lower floret length
Ecology: Seasonal streams, ditches, irrigated fields
Elevation: < 100 m.
Bioregional distribution: Deltaic Great Central Valley (Solano Co.), Southwestern California, Sonoran Desert
Distribution outside California: native to c&s US

previous taxon | next taxon
bioregional map for ERIOCHLOA%20contracta being generated
YOU CAN HELP US make sure that our distributional information is correct and current. If you know that a plant occurs in a wild, reproducing state in a Jepson bioregion NOT highlighted on the map, please contact us with that information. Please realize that we cannot incorporate range extensions without access to a voucher specimen, which should (ultimately) be deposited in an herbarium. You can send the pressed, dried collection (with complete locality information indicated) to us (e-mail us for details) or refer us to an accessioned herbarium specimen. Non-occurrence of a plant in an indicated area is difficult to document, but we will especially value your input on those types of possible errors (see automatic conversion of distribution data to maps).

Retrieve Jepson Interchange Index to Plant Names entry for Eriochloa contracta
Retrieve dichotomous key for Eriochloa
Overlay Consortium of California Herbaria specimen data by county on this map
Show other taxa with the same California distribution | Read about bioregions | Get lists of plants in a bioregion
Return to the Jepson Interchange main page
Return to treatment index page
  • This page is no longer being maintained.

University & Jepson Herbaria Home Page |
General Information | University Herbarium | Jepson Herbarium |
Visiting the Herbaria | On-line Resources | Research |
Education | Related Sites
Copyright © by the Regents of the University of California