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Spinifex longifolius

Spinifex longifolius R. Br. Prodr. 198
(1810).

Classification. (GPWG 2001) : Subfamily
Panicoideae. Paniceae.

Type of Basionym or
Protologue Information
: Australia: Baudin.

Key references
(books and floras):
[1810]. R.Brown, Prodromus (198 & as Spinifex
fragilis
), [1878] G.Bentham, Flora Australiensis 7 (504), [1952]
C.A.Gardner, Flora of Western Australia 1 Gramineae (252), [2002]
D.Sharp & B.K.Simon, AusGrass, Grasses of Australia, [2002]
J.Wheeler, N.Marchant & M.Lewington, Flora of the South West (435), [2006]
J.Jessop, G.R.M.Dashorst, F.M.James, Grasses of South Australia (488).

Illustrations:
[1952] C.A.Gardner, Flora of Western Australia 1 Gramineae (251,
Pl. 74), [2006] J.Jessop, G.R.M.Dashorst, F.M.James, Grasses of South
Australia
 (488, Fig. 422).

Habit.
Perennial. Stolons present. Culms 30–80 cm tall, woody. Mid-culm nodes
glabrous. Leaf-sheaths glabrous on surface. Ligule a fringe of hairs, 2.5–3.2
mm long. Leaf-blades flat or involute, 15–35 cm long, 1.5–4 mm wide. Leaf-blade
surface glabrous.

Inflorescence.
Inflorescence digitate, with racemose branches. Racemes 1, radiating, 4–12 cm
long.

Spikelets.
Spikelets sessile. Male spikelets sessile. Fertile spikelets 2-flowered, the
lower floret barren (rarely male), the upper fertile, comprising 1 basal
sterile florets, comprising 1 fertile floret(s), without rachilla extension,
lanceolate or elliptic, dorsally compressed, 6–6.5 mm long.

Glumes.
Glumes similar, firmer than fertile lemma. Lower glume lanceolate or elliptic,
chartaceous, without keels, 7–9 -nerved. Lower glume surface glabrous. Upper
glume lanceolate or elliptic, 5.5–6.5 mm long, chartaceous, without keels, 5
-nerved. Upper glume surface glabrous. Florets. Basal sterile florets 1,
barren, without significant palea. Lemma of lower sterile floret 100 % of
length of spikelet, chartaceous, 5 -nerved. Fertile florets bisexual or female.

Fertile lemma 5.6–6.3
mm long, without keel. Anthers 3.

Continental
Distribution
: Tropical Asia and Australasia.

Australian
Distribution
: Western Australia, Northern Territory, Queensland.

Western Australia:
Carnarvon. Drummond. Northern Territory: Darwin & Gulf. Queensland:
Burke, Cook.

Notes.
Spinifex longifolius evidently hybridizes with S. hirsutus and
produces the hybrid, S. x alterniflorus.

 The male inflorescence is a raceme with
biseriate spikelets; the bristle is relatively short (c. 15–20 mm long) and
scabrous; the spikelet are distinctly pedicellate, glabrous to scabrous, with
the glumes much smaller than the florets.

Occurs over a large
coastal distance from SW W.A., through the N.T. into the Cook District of Qld.
In temperate heaths, tropical and subtropical rain forests, dry sclerophyll
forests, tropical and subtropical sub-humid woodlands, temperate sub-humid
woodlands, acacia shrublands, arid hummock grasslands, and coastal grasslands.
Flowers May-Nov.

 

AVH 2011

 

 

Scratchpads developed and conceived by (alphabetical): Ed Baker, Katherine Bouton Alice Heaton Dimitris Koureas, Laurence Livermore, Dave Roberts, Simon Rycroft, Ben Scott, Vince Smith