Phalaris canariensis L.

Family: Poaceae, Tribe: Poeae

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


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


Primary Disseminule Type

floret subtended by 2 sterile lemmas or floret alone

Description (diagnostics are in brown)

Spikelets solitary, sessile, obovate, strongly laterally compressed, 6–10 mm long, consisting of 2 basal sterile florets (primarily lemmas) and 1 fertile floret, without rachilla extension. Disarticulation above the glumes and below the sterile floret pair, although the sterile lemmas are easily knocked off.

Glumes persistent, similar, exceeding apex of florets (1.3–1.6 length of adjacent fertile lemma), 6–10 mm long x 2–12.5 mm wide, elliptic, chartaceous, keeled, keels winged (wings to 0.66 mm wide), wings widening distally, surface smooth to asperulous, mostly glabrous, sometimes sparsely pilose between the veins, 3–5-veined, lateral veins inconspicuous, apices acute to rounded, mucronate.

Basal sterile florets equal or subequal, without significant palea, lanceolate, 2–4.5 mm long x 0.5–1 mm wide, 0.5–0.75 length of fertile lemma, surface glabrous to sparsely pubescent, apices acute.

Fertile lemma elliptic, laterally compressed, 4.5–6.8 mm long, cartilaginous, shiny, straw-colored, keeled, 5-veined, surface pubescent, apex acute.

Fertile palea cartilaginous, without keel, 2-veined, surface pubescent.

Caryopsis elliptic, laterally compressed, ca. 4 mm long x 1.4 mm wide, hilum linear.

Similar Species

Phalaris minor

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)