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Vascular Plants of California
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Paspalum dilatatum

Higher Taxonomy
Family: Poaceae (Gramineae)View DescriptionDichotomous Key
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.
Genus: PaspalumView DescriptionDichotomous Key

Habit: Perennial herb (in California), tufted, rhizomatous, or stoloniferous. Stem: decumbent to erect; internode solid to hollow. Leaf: basal and cauline; sheath glabrous or hairy; ligule membranous. Inflorescence: racemes 1 to many, branches digitate or raceme-like, spreading to erect. Spikelet: 2-flowered (lower floret sterile, upper floret fertile), dorsally compressed, falling as one unit, fertile lemma convex, positioned adaxially, subsessile to short-pedicelled, 1 or 2, in 2 rows along 1 side of rachis; lower glume 0, rarely present and then not on every spikelet in a raceme; upper glume and sterile lemma membranous, subequal, tip rounded, sterile palea 0 or rudimentary; fertile lemma and palea hardened, smooth, straw-colored; fertile lemma margins scarious, inrolled, clasping palea. Fruit: white, yellow, or brown, round to elliptical, planoconvex or flattened.
Species In Genus: +- 300--400 species: tropics, warm temperate worldwide. Etymology: (Greek: ancient name for a kind of millet) Note: Paspalum notatum Flüggé not naturalized in California.
Unabridged Note: Paspalum boscianum collected 1934 as agricultural weed in rice field.
eFlora Treatment Author: Charles Allen
Reference: Allen & Hall 2003 FNANM 25:566--599
Unabridged Reference: Riefner & Columbus J Bot Res Inst Texas 2:743--759
Paspalum dilatatum Poir.
Habit: Cespitose, base knotty; rhizomes < 1 cm. Stem: 50--175 cm, erect; nodes glabrous. Leaf: sheath glabrous to pubescent, especially lower; ligule 1.5--3.8 mm; blade to 35 cm, 2--16.5 mm wide, flat, generally glabrous, adaxial surface slightly long-hairy near base. Inflorescence: racemes 2--7, 1.5--12 cm, terminal, ascending; axis 0.7--1.4 mm wide, winged, glabrous except margins scabrous. Spikelet: paired, (2.3)3--4 mm, 1.7--2.5 mm wide, appressed to rachis, ovate, straw-yellow (purple), tip tapered; lower glume 0; upper glume and sterile lemma 5--7-veined, long-silky-hairy on margins; fertile floret straw-colored. Fruit: 2--2.3 mm, white to brown. Chromosomes: 2n=20,40,50.
Ecology: Disturbed areas; Elevation: < 1160 m. Bioregional Distribution: CA-FP, DMoj; Distribution Outside California: southern United States; native to South America. Flowering Time: May--Nov
Jepson eFlora Author: Charles Allen
Reference: Allen & Hall 2003 FNANM 25:566--599
Unabridged Reference: Riefner & Columbus J Bot Res Inst Texas 2:743--759
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Botanical illustration including Paspalum dilatatum

botanical illustration including Paspalum dilatatum


Citation for this treatment: Charles Allen 2012, Paspalum dilatatum, in Jepson Flora Project (eds.) Jepson eFlora,, accessed on December 14, 2018.

Citation for the whole project: Jepson Flora Project (eds.) 2018, Jepson eFlora,, accessed on December 14, 2018.

Paspalum dilatatum
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© 2016 Neal Kramer
Paspalum dilatatum
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© 2016 Neal Kramer
Paspalum dilatatum
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© 2016 Neal Kramer
Paspalum dilatatum
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© 2016 Neal Kramer
Paspalum dilatatum
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© 2009 Barry Rice
Paspalum dilatatum
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© 2011 Steve Matson

More photos of Paspalum dilatatum in CalPhotos

Geographic subdivisions for Paspalum dilatatum:
CA-FP, DMoj;
Markers link to CCH specimen records. Yellow markers indicate records that may provide evidence for eFlora range revision or may have georeferencing or identification issues. Purple markers indicate specimens collected from a garden, greenhouse, or other non-wild location.
map of distribution 1
(Note: any qualifiers in the taxon distribution description, such as 'northern', 'southern', 'adjacent' etc., are not reflected in the map above, and in some cases indication of a taxon in a subdivision is based on a single collection or author-verified occurence).

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Data provided by the participants of the Consortium of California Herbaria.
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CCH collections by month

Duplicates counted once; synonyms included.
Species do not include records of infraspecific taxa, if there are more than 1 infraspecific taxon in CA.
Blue line denotes eFlora flowering time.