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.


Dieter H. Wilken

Stems ascending to erect
Leaves basal and lower cauline; ligule ± translucent; blade flat
Inflorescence panicle-like, narrow, compact; branches generally erect
Spikelets stalked; glumes unequal, membranous at swollen base, 1-veined; floret 1, breaking above glumes; axis prolonged as a minute bristle; lemma << glumes, translucent, truncate to obtuse, awnless to awned, 5-veined; palea ± = lemma
Species in genus: 2 species: warm temp Eur, w Asia
Etymology: (Greek: small pouch, from swollen spikelet base)


G. ventricosum (Gouan) Schinz & Thell.


Plants 1–4 dm, generally glabrous
Leaf: ligule 2–4 mm; blade 1–4 cm
Inflorescence 1.5–9 cm, 4–10 mm wide
Spikelet: glumes translucent between veins, keel minutely scabrous, lower glume 6–7 mm, upper 3–5 mm; lemma ± 1 mm, awned below truncate, toothed tip, awn 3–5 mm, straight to curved
Chromosomes: 2n=14
Ecology: Open, generally dry, disturbed sites
Elevation: < 1200 m.
Bioregional distribution: California Floristic Province, Modoc Plateau
Distribution outside California: to Oregon, Canada, ne US; native to Europe

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