Eragrostis mexicana (Hornem.) Link

Family: Poaceae, Tribe: Eragrostideae

Pertinent Synonyms & Notes (particularly those used in California; go to GRIN for other synonyms)

including ssp. mexicana and ssp. virescens (J. Presl) S. D. Koch & Sánchez Vega

Pertinent Common Names (particularly those used in California; go to GRIN for other common names)

Mexican lovegrass

Primary Disseminule Type

caryopsis alone or ± sheathed by lemma

Description (diagnostics are in brown)

Spikelets solitary, pedicelled (pedicels 1–6(7) mm long), consisting of 5–11(15) fertile florets with similar-looking though diminished sterile florets at apex, linear-lanceolate to ovate, laterally compressed, (4)5–10(11) mm long x 0.7–2.4 mm wide, grayish-green to purplish. Disarticulation between fertile florets such that the palea is persistent and the disseminule is typically the caryopsis ± sheathed by the lemma.

Glumes deciduous, similar, ovate to lanceolate, shorter than spikelet, (0.7)1.6–2(2.3) mm long (0.9 length of lemma), membranous, keeled (eglandular), 1-veined, apices acute.

Lemma ovate, (1.2)2–2.2(2.4) mm long, membranous, grayish-green, sometimes mottled red, surface glabrous or with a few hairs, keeled, 3-veined, midvein scabrous but eglandular, lateral veins ± distinct, apex acute.

Palea 1–2.2 mm long, hyaline, 2-veined, keels scabrous, sometimes ciliolate, apex obtuse to truncate.

Caryopsis ellipsoid or ovoid to pyriform or rectangular-prismatic, laterally compressed, ± terete to somewhat trigonous in cross-section, (0.2)0.5–0.8(1) mm long, light to dark reddish-brown, distal two-thirds opaque, surface striate to reticulate, partially longitudinally and widely grooved on ventral side, embryo 0.5–0.6 length of caryopsis, ± same color as caryopsis, hilum ± round, dark.

Similar Species

Similar Species Comparison Chart

Risk Assessment (codes in yellow or red indicate cause for concern; assessments are current as of mid-2011; click AUQP, NZBORIC, or NZBPI for access to the most recent versions of these databases and possible assessment changes)