Jepson eFlora: Taxon page
Key to families | Table of families and genera
Previous taxon Index to accepted names and synonyms:
| A | B | C | D | E | F | G | H | I | J | K | L | M | N | O | P | Q | R | S | T | U | V | W | X | Y | Z |
Next taxon
Poa
BLUE GRASS

Higher Taxonomy
Family: Poaceae (Gramineae)View DescriptionDichotomous Key

Common Name: GRASS FAMILY
Habit: Annual to woody perennial herb; roots generally fibrous. Stem: generally round, hollow; nodes swollen, solid. Leaf: alternate, 2-ranked, generally linear, parallel-veined; 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; perianth vestigial; stamens generally 3; stigmas generally 2, generally plumose. Fruit: grain, sometimes achene- or utricle-like.
Genera In Family: 650--900 genera; +- 10550 species: worldwide; greatest economic importance of any family (wheat, rice, maize, millet, sorghum, sugar cane, forage crops, ornamental, weeds; thatching, weaving, building materials). Note: Generally wind-pollinated. Achnatherum, Ampelodesmos, Hesperostipa, Nassella, Piptatherum, Piptochaetium, Ptilagrostis moved to Stipa; Elytrigia, Leymus, Pascopyrum, Pseudoroegneria, Taeniatherum to Elymus; Hierochloe to Anthoxanthum; Lolium, Vulpia to Festuca; Lycurus to Muhlenbergia; Monanthochloe to Distichlis; Pleuraphis to Hilaria; Rhynchelytrum to Melinis. The following taxa (in genera not included here), recorded in California from historical collections or reported in literature, are extirpated, lacking vouchers, or not considered naturalized: Acrachne racemosa (Roth) Ohwi, Allolepis texana (Vasey) Soderstr. & H.F. Decker, Amphibromus nervosus (Hook. f.) Baill., Axonopus affinis Chase, Axonopus fissifolius (Raddi) Kuhlm., Coix lacryma-jobi L., Cutandia memphitica (Spreng.) K. Richt., Dinebra retroflexa (Vahl) Panz., Eremochloa ciliaris (L.) Merr., Eustachys distichophylla (Lag.) Nees, Gaudinia fragilis (L.) P. Beauv., Miscanthus sinensis Andersson, Neyraudia arundinacea (L.) Henrard, Phyllostachys aurea Rivière & C. Rivière, Phyllostachys bambusoides Siebold & Zuccarini, Rottboellia cochinchinensis (Lour.) Clayton, Schedonnardus paniculatus (Nutt.) Branner & Coville, Schizachyrium cirratum (Hack.) Wooton & Standl., Schizachyrium scoparium (Michx.) Nash, Themeda quadrivalvis (L.) Kuntze, Thysanolaena latifolia (Hornem.) Honda, Tribolium obliterum (Hemsl.) Renvoize, Zea mays L., Zizania palustris L. var. interior (Fassett) Dore, Zoysia japonica Steud. Paspalum pubiflorum E. Fourn., Paspalum quadrifarium Lam., are now reported for southern California (J Bot Res Inst Texas 4:761--770). See Glossary p. 30 for illustrations of general family characteristics.
eFlora Treatment Author: James P. Smith, Jr., except as noted
Scientific Editor: James P. Smith, Jr., J. Travis Columbus, Dieter H. Wilken.

Poa
Habit: Annual, perennial herb; some +- dioecious. Stem: 0.3--12 dm. Leaf: sheath open most of length to closed (best observed on upper stem leaf); ligule thin, flexible, without a rim of hairs; blade grooved above on both sides of midvein, flat, folded, or inrolled, generally smooth or scabrous on veins, generally prow-tipped. Inflorescence: panicle-like; branches appressed to drooping. Spikelet: generally compressed, breaking between florets; glumes 2, +- equal, generally < lowest lemma, awnless; florets generally 2--6; callus indistinct, often with obvious tuft of long cobwebby hairs; lemma generally keeled to base, like glumes, awnless, veins generally 5, hairy or glabrous, upper margins thin-membranous; palea well developed, keel generally scabrous. Flower: generally bisexual, sometimes pistillate and/or staminate; fertile anthers 0.2--4.5 mm; ovary glabrous; fruit firm.
Species In Genus: +- 500 species: temperate and cool regions. Etymology: (Greek: ancient name applied to various grasses, fodder plants) Note: California is center of diversity in North America. Spikelet data recorded from lowest florets of spikelet at 25 ×.
eFlora Treatment Author: Robert J. Soreng
Jepson Online Interchange
Key to Poa

Previous taxon: Pleuropogon refractus
Next taxon: Poa abbreviata

Name Search

Contact/Feedback

Citation for this treatment: Robert J. Soreng 2016. Poa, in Jepson Flora Project (eds.) Jepson eFlora, http://ucjeps.berkeley.edu/cgi-bin/get_IJM.pl?tid=11145, accessed on May 31, 2016.

Citation for the whole project: Jepson Flora Project (eds.) 2016. Jepson eFlora, http://ucjeps.berkeley.edu/IJM.html, accessed on May 31, 2016.


Poa flabellata
click for enlargement
© 2010 California Academy of Sciences
Poa scabrella
click for enlargement
© 2012 Gary A. Monroe
Poa fendleriana
click for enlargement
© 2010 James M. Andre
Poa secunda subsp. secunda
click for enlargement
© 2009 Keir Morse
Poa bulbosa
click for enlargement
© 2009 Keir Morse
Poa leptocoma
click for enlargement
© 2010 Steve Matson

More photos of Poa in CalPhotos