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Sporobolus flexuosus
MESA DROPSEED

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.
Genus: SporobolusView DescriptionDichotomous Key

Common Name: DROPSEED, SACATON
Habit: Annual, perennial herb. Stem: generally ascending to erect, 2--20 dm, generally tufted, +- solid in ×-section. Leaf: generally basal; cauline few, ascending or curving away; distal sheath margin and collar glabrous or hairy; ligule < 1 mm, hairy or membranous, fringed; blade flat to inrolled, generally glabrous or scabrous, occasionally short-soft-hairy. Inflorescence: terminal, also occasionally axillary, panicle- or spike-like, generally partly enclosed by sheath; branches spreading or appressed. Spikelet: < 6 mm, generally pale to gray-green or +- purple; glumes generally unequal, upper < or > lemma, membranous to translucent, 1-veined; floret bisexual, generally breaking above glumes; lemma texture generally like glumes, 1(3)-veined; palea < or > lemma. Fruit: utricle-like, when wet gelatinous with seed emergent from split ovary wall.
Species In Genus: +- 150 species: America, Eurasia, Africa, Australia. Etymology: (Greek: to throw seed, from deciduous seeds)
eFlora Treatment Author: Michael Curto

Sporobolus flexuosus (Thurb. ex Vasey) Rydb.
NATIVE
Habit: Perennial herb. Stem: tufted, erect or decumbent, 3--10(12) dm. Leaf: base dull, green to brown, margin glabrous or ciliate, collar with conspicuous hairs to 4 mm; ligule < 0.5--1 mm, fringe hairs to 4 mm; blade 5--25 cm, 1--6 mm wide. Inflorescence: generally terminal, exserted or base sheathed, generally ovate at maturity, open; central axis nodding, 1° branches generally spreading widely, lowest generally > 3 cm, > internodes, 2°, 3° spreading, entangled, base naked, evident. Spikelet: 1.5--2.5 mm, green to purple or lead-colored; glumes lanceolate, tip acute, unequal, lower 0.9--1.5 mm, upper 1.5--2.5, > 0.6 × lemma; lemma 1.5--2.5 mm, glabrous, ovate to lanceolate, tip acute; anthers 0.2--0.7 mm. Fruit: 0.6--1 mm, ellipsoid, striate, light- to red-brown. Chromosomes: 2n=36,38.
Ecology: Rocky to sandy washes, slopes, scrub, woodland; Elevation: 100--2100 m. Bioregional Distribution: SNE, D; Distribution Outside California: to Nevada, Colorado, Oklahoma, western Texas, northern Mexico. Flowering Time: May--Oct
Unabridged Note: Reports of Sporobolus floridanus Chapm. in California based on erroneously annotated Sporobolus flexuosus from Death Valley.
eFlora Treatment Author: Michael Curto
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Citation for this treatment: Michael Curto 2016. Sporobolus flexuosus, in Jepson Flora Project (eds.) Jepson eFlora, http://ucjeps.berkeley.edu/cgi-bin/get_IJM.pl?tid=45304, accessed on December 08, 2016.

Citation for the whole project: Jepson Flora Project (eds.) 2016. Jepson eFlora, http://ucjeps.berkeley.edu/IJM.html, accessed on December 08, 2016.


Sporobolus flexuosus
click for enlargement
© 2011 Steve Matson
Sporobolus flexuosus
click for enlargement
© 2011 Steve Matson
Sporobolus flexuosus
click for enlargement
© 2011 Steve Matson
Sporobolus flexuosus
click for enlargement
© 2011 Steve Matson
Sporobolus flexuosus
click for enlargement
© 2011 Steve Matson

More photos of Sporobolus flexuosus in CalPhotos


Geographic subdivisions for Sporobolus flexuosus:
SNE, D;
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.
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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.
Blue line denotes eFlora flowering time.