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Vascular Plants of California
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Beckmannia syzigachne

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: BeckmanniaView Description 

Habit: Annual [rhizomatous perennial herb]. Stem: generally erect, 2--12(15) dm. Leaf: cauline; sheath glabrous, ribbed; ligule membranous, acute, entire or irregularly cut; blade flat, glabrous. Inflorescence: panicle-like; branches short, spike-like, ascending to appressed; spikelets 2-ranked, overlapping. Spikelet: +- round in outline; glumes +- equal, strongly laterally compressed, > adjacent lemmas, round to obovate in side view, keeled, wrinkled, 3-veined; axis breaking below glumes, falling as 1 unit; florets 1--2, bisexual or upper reduced; lemma 5-veined, acuminate, awn 0; palea narrow, +- = lemma.
Species In Genus: 2 species: North America, Eurasia. Etymology: (J. Beckmann, German botanist, 1739--1811)
eFlora Treatment Author: James P. Smith, Jr.
Reference: Hatch 2007 FNANM 24:484--486
Unabridged Reference: Reeder 1953 Bull Torrey Bot Club 80:187--196
Beckmannia syzigachne (Steud.) Fernald
Habit: Annual, tufted. Stem: 2--12 dm. Leaf: ligule 4--11 mm, pubescent; blade 6--21 cm, 4--10(20) mm wide, flat, scabrous. Inflorescence: 7--30 cm, narrow, +- dense; branches 1-sided, generally 1--2 cm, ascending to appressed. Spikelet: 2--3 mm; glumes prominently keeled, glabrous to finely scabrous, tip short-pointed; floret 1; lemma 2--3 mm, lanceolate, acuminate, awn 0; palea +- equal lemma, acute. Chromosomes: 2n=14.
Ecology: Margins of ponds, streams, marshes; Elevation: < 2000 m. Bioregional Distribution: NW, CaR, n SN, ScV, n CCo, SnFrB, MP, n SNE; Distribution Outside California: most of North America, except southeastern United States. Flowering Time: May--Jul Note: Used for forage.
Synonyms: Beckamannia syzigachne subsp. baicalensis (Kusn.) Hultén
Jepson eFlora Author: James P. Smith, Jr.
Reference: Hatch 2007 FNANM 24:484--486
Index of California Plant Names (ICPN; linked via the Jepson Online Interchange)

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Botanical illustration including Beckmannia syzigachne

botanical illustration including Beckmannia syzigachne


Citation for this treatment: James P. Smith, Jr. 2012, Beckmannia syzigachne, in Jepson Flora Project (eds.) Jepson eFlora,, accessed on January 24, 2021.

Citation for the whole project: Jepson Flora Project (eds.) 2021, Jepson eFlora,, accessed on January 24, 2021.

Beckmannia syzigachne
click for enlargement
© 2015 Steve Matson
Beckmannia syzigachne
click for enlargement
© 2005 Steve Matson
Beckmannia syzigachne
click for enlargement
© 2015 Steve Matson
Beckmannia syzigachne
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© 2010 Vernon Smith
Beckmannia syzigachne
click for enlargement
© 2005 Steve Matson
Beckmannia syzigachne
click for enlargement
© 2015 Steve Matson

More photos of Beckmannia syzigachne in CalPhotos

Geographic subdivisions for Beckmannia syzigachne:
NW, CaR, n SN, ScV, n CCo, SnFrB, MP, n SNE
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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.
View all CCH records
All markers link to CCH specimen records. The original determination is shown in the popup window.
Blue markers indicate specimens that map to one of the expected Jepson geographic subdivisions (see left map). Purple markers indicate specimens collected from a garden, greenhouse, or other non-wild location.
Yellow markers indicate records that may provide evidence for eFlora range revision or may have georeferencing or identification issues.

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 (fruiting time in some monocot genera).