Sclerochloa* Ess. Agrostogr. 97, 177, t. 19, fig. 4 (1812).
Derivation:. From the Greek skleros (hard) and chloë (grass), alluding to leathery glumes and lemmas.
Key references (keys and floras):. J.P.Jessop, Flora of South Australia 4:1903 (1986); B.K.Simon, Key to Australian Grasses 155 (1993); S.W.L.Jacobs and K.L.McClay, Flora of New South Wales 4: 605–606 (1993); N.G.Walsh, Flora of Victoria 2: 439 (1994); D.I.Morris, Student's Flora of Tasmania 4B: 225(1994); D.Sharp and B.K.Simon, AusGrass (2002); J.P.Jessop, Grasses of South Australia 166–168 (2006); S.W.L.Jacobs, R.D.B.Whalley & D.J.B.Wheeler, Grasses of New South Wales, 4th ed, 365 (2008); A.Wilson (ed.), Flora of Australia 44A: Poaceae 2: 297 (2009).
W.D.Clayton & S.A.Renvoize, Genera Graminum (1986), genus (144).
Naturalised. 2 species, from southern Europe to western Asia. 1 species in Australia, SA, NSW, Vic, and Tas.
Habit. Annual, tufted. Leaf blades narrow. Ligule an unfringed membrane.
Inflorescence. Inflorescence one-sided, a single raceme or paniculate (with short, stout branches).
Spikelets. Spikelets laterally compressed, pedicelled (the pedicels stout, to 1 mm long); with naked rachilla extension. Fertile spikelets laterally compressed, falling with glumes (and with the pedicels).
Glumes. Glumes unequal, shorter than spikelet, shorter than adjacent lemmas, hairless, glabrous, obtuse (to emarginate), awnless, similar (herbaceous with membranous margins, oblong-ovate, somewhat asymmetric). Lower glume (1–)3–5 nerved. Upper glume 5–9 nerved.
Florets. Fertile florets 3–8. Lemmas decidedly firmer than glumes (leathery, the margins membranous), entire at apex or incised, blunt, not deeply cleft (rounded to emarginate), muticous, 5–7 nerved, not keeled. Palea relatively long, 2 nerved, 2 keeled. Lodicules 2. Stigmas 2. Grain small (2.5–3.5 mm long), trigonous. Hilum short (round). Embryo small. Endosperm hard.
Kranz Anatomy. C3.
2n = 14, 2 ploid, commonly adventive.
Habitat. Mesophytic, xerophytic. Species of open habitats.
Classification. Pooideae; Poeae.
Types Species. S. dura (L.) P.Beauv.
Biogeographic Element. Clifford & Simon 1981, Simon & Jacobs 1990: Naturalised.