Astrebla pectinata

Astrebla pectinata (Lindl.) F. Muell.
ex Benth. Fl. Austral. 7: 602 (1878).

(GPWG 2001) : Subfamily Chloridoideae. Cynodonteae.

Basionym and/or
Replacement Name:
Lindl. Three Exped. Australia 2: 26 (1838).

Type of Basionym or
Protologue Information
: IT: Coll. Ukn. 60, 1836, Australia: eastern
Australia (US-0865621 (fragm.)). From cambridge.

Key references
(books and floras):
[1878] G.Bentham, Flora Australiensis 7 (602),
[1952] C.A.Gardner, Flora of Western Australia 1 Gramineae (202),
[1981] M.Lazarides in J.Jessop (ed)., Flora of Central Australia (448),
[2002] D.Sharp & B.K.Simon, AusGrass, Grasses of Australia, [2006]
J.Jessop, G.R.M.Dashorst, F.M.James, Grasses of South Australia (339),
[2008] S.W.L.Jacobs, R.D.B.Walley & D.J.B.Wheeler, Grasses of New South

[1952] C.A.Gardner, Flora of Western Australia 1 Gramineae (203,
Pl. 60), [1984] N.T.Burbidge. rev. S.W.L.Jacobs, Australian Grasses  (69), [2005] K.Mallet (ed.), Flora of
44B: Poaceae 3 (Fig. 81H-J), [2006] J.Jessop,
G.R.M.Dashorst, F.M.James, Grasses of South Australia  (340, Fig. 272), [2008] S.W.L.Jacobs,
R.D.B.Whalley & D.J.B.Wheeler, Grasses of New South Wales, 4th edn

Derivation: L.
comb; -ata, possessing. Inflorescence with spikes or racemes
bearing a fanciful resemblance to a comb.

Perennial. Rhizomes present, short. Culms erect, 15–120 cm tall, 6–9 -noded.
Lateral branches branched. Ligule a fringed membrane, a ciliolate membrane.
Leaf-blades 7–25 cm long, 2.7 mm wide.

Inflorescence solid, a raceme. Racemes 1, 3–13 cm long, 10–20 mm wide.

Spikelets pedicelled. Fertile spikelets many flowered, with at least 2 fertile
florets (2–4), comprising 2–4 fertile floret(s), with diminished florets at the
apex, oblong, laterally compressed, 8–20 mm long.

Glumes. Glumes
dissimilar, thinner than fertile lemma. Lower glume lanceolate or ovate,
chartaceous, much thinner on margins, keeled, 1-keeled, 5–9 -nerved. Upper
glume lanceolate or ovate, 8–13 mm long, chartaceous, without keels, 7–16

Fertile lemma 3–5 mm long, without keel, 3 -nerved (in the body). Lemma surface
indumented. Lemma apex lobed, awned, 1 -awned. Median (principal) awn 6 mm long
overall. Lodicules present. Anthers 3.

: Australasia.

: Western Australia, Northern Territory, South Australia,
Queensland, New South Wales.

Western Australia:
Gardner, Hall. Giles, Fortescue, Ashburton, Carnarvon, Austin. Northern
: Victoria River, Barkly Tableland, Central Australia North,
Central Australia South. South Australia: North-western, Lake Eyre,
Gairdner-Torrens Basin, Flinders Ranges, Eastern. Queensland: Burke,
Darling Downs, Gregory North, Maranoa, Mitchell, South Kennedy, Warrego,
Gregory South. New South Wales: North-Western Slopes, North-Western
Plains, South-Western Plains, North Far Western Plains.

Astrebla pectinata is a vigorous perennial that persists under adverse
conditions such as heavy stocking and drought. Pastures dominated by the
species produce an abundance of fodder and thus are capable of maintaining
large numbers of stock for long periods. They are particularly valuable in good
seasons when associated short-lived grasses and forbs are prolific. At least
one collection with a paniculate inflorescence has been made, the individual
being out-breeding. Cleistogamy is common, and the species is remarkably
uniform across its distribution.

across most of inland Australia between 15°S and 33°S (N of 28°S in W.A.),
except the Great Sandy, Gibson and Great Victoria Deserts of W.A. This species
is the dominant grass over most of the Barkly Tableland and headwaters of the
Georgina R. in the N.T. with much smaller areas of dominance at the head of
Sturt Ck and N of Mt Hay. Occurrences in W.A. and S.A. are restricted to
relatively small pockets of cracking clay soils, for example, between ridges in
hilly areas, in depressions and drainage lines. Through Qld and N.S.W. A.
may become locally dominant but generally it is less abundant
than A. lappacea or other perennial grasses. Associated taxa include
other Astrebla species, Eragrostis setifolia, Eulalia aurea,
and Aristida; flowers after rain.

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