Jepson Flora Project: Jepson Interchange    

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Jepson Interchange (more information)
©Copyright 1993 by the Regents of the University of California

  • Up-to-date information about California vascular plants is available from 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.



Mary E. Barkworth

Annual, perennial herb, sometimes from short rhizomes
Stem decumbent to erect, generally abruptly bent at base
Leaf: sheath glabrous or hairy, short-appendaged or not; blade flat or ± rolled
Inflorescence spike-like, dense; axis breaking apart at nodes in fruit; spikelets 2-ranked, strongly overlapping, 3 per node, spikelets of 2 kinds
Central spikelet bisexual, generally sessile; with 1 stalked or sessile floret; glumes awn-like, generally > floret; lemma awned
Lateral spikelets 2, sterile or staminate, generally short-stalked; with 1 sessile floret; glumes awn-like, > floret, lemma generally awned
Species in genus: 32 species: temp worldwide except Australia
Etymology: (Latin: ancient name for Barley)
Reference: [Baum & Bailey 1990 Canad J Bot 68:2433–2442]


H. brachyantherum Nevski

Stems < 9 dm, loosely to densely tufted; nodes glabrous
Leaf: sheath glabrous to sparsely hairy; appendages 0; blade 1.5–9 mm wide, glabrous or hairy
Inflorescence 8–10 cm, green to ± purplish
Central spikelet: glumes 7–19 mm, sometimes flat at base, generally straight with age; floret 5.5–10 mm; lemma awn 3.5–22 mm
Lateral spikelets: glumes 6.5–19 mm, straight or spreading with age, lower glume sometimes flat at base; floret < 7 mm or vestigial; lemma awn < 7.5 mm; anthers 0.9–5.5 mm
Chromosomes: 2n=14,28,42
Ecology: Meadows, pastures, streambanks
Elevation: < 3400 m.
Bioregional distribution: California Floristic Province, Great Basin Floristic Province
Distribution outside California: to Alaska, Rocky Mtns, Mexico, Eurasia


subsp. brachyantherum

Stem generally robust
Leaf: blade < 19 cm, < 9 mm wide, glabrous or sparsely short-hairy
Central spikelet: glumes 7–17 mm, generally straight with age; lemma awn < 4.5 mm; anthers 1–3.5 mm
Chromosomes: 2n=28,42
Ecology: Habitat and range of sp
Bioregional distribution: California (except Desert)
Flowering time: May–Aug

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