Cyperochloa Brunonia 9: 216 (1986).
Derivation:. From the Greek chloa (a grass), and alluding to the cyperaceous appearance of the inflorescence.
Taxonomic revisions, nomenclatural references:. M.Lazarides, Brunonia 9: 216 (1986).
Key references (keys and floras):. B.K.Simon, Key to Australian Grasses 89 (1993); D.Sharp and B.K.Simon, AusGrass (2002).
Native, endemic. 1 species. WA.
Habit. Wiry perennial (remarkably sedge-like in appearance, the plants forming colonies up to 2 m across), tufted. Leaf blades narrow. Ligule a fringe of hairs (short, dense).
Inflorescence. Inflorescence paniculate, capitate (consisting of 2–5 digitately-borne, bracteate spikelets).
Spikelets. Spikelets laterally compressed, sessile to subsessile; with naked rachilla extension. Fertile spikelets broadly ovate, laterally compressed, disarticulating above glumes.
Glumes. Glumes unequal (the upper glume generally longer), shorter than spikelet, shorter than adjacent lemmas, hairy (hirsute or pubescent below and sometimes on the nerves, the margins ciliate), pointed (acute) or obtuse, awnless (muticous), keeled to non-keeled (slightly keeled to rounded on the back), similar (ovate to lanceolate, membranous to cartilaginous). Lower glume 3 nerved or 5 nerved. Upper glume 3 nerved or 5 nerved.
Florets. Fertile florets 4–9. Lemmas similar in texture to glumes, entire at apex or incised, blunt, muticous (at the most, with a minute projection from the median nerve), without a germination flap, 5 nerved or 7 nerved, 1 keeled. Palea relatively long, entire to apically notched (no more than minutely so), thinner than lemma (membranous with hyaline margins, hairy), 2 nerved, 2 keeled. Palea keels wingless. Distal incomplete florets underdeveloped (i.e., the upper 1–2). Callus short, blunt. Lodicules 2. Stamens 3. Stigmas 2. Grain small (about 1.5 mm long), terete. Hilum short. Embryo not visible through the opaque pericarp. Endosperm hard.
Kranz Anatomy. C3.
Habitat. Xerophytic. Dry sandy places. Species of open habitats.
Classification. Centothecoideae: Cyperochloeae.
Notes. The generic name of this new grass was prompted by its sedge-like appearance, which relects some of its characteristic features. Of these, the solitary, shortly pedunculate, bracteate spike of closely clustered spikelets subtended by the open, spathaceous sheath of a terminal leaf is diagnostic. Another distinctive feature is the solid, scape-like culms, which are nodeless save for the terminal spatheate node, each bearing a few basal leaves arising from nodes below ground level (Lazarides and Watson, 1987). Although originally assigned to the Arundinoideae, it is placed in Incertae Sedis (unknown) by GPWG (2001), although a current view is that it may belong in the Centothecoideae (Kellogg pers.com.).
Types Species. C. hirsuta Lazarides & L.Watson.
Biogeographic Element. Clifford & Simon 1981, Simon & Jacobs 1990: Endemic.