Digitaria milanjiana*

Digitaria milanjiana* (Rendle) Stapf. Fl. Trop. Afr. 9: 430 (1919).

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

Basionym and/or Replacement Name:  Panicum milanjianum Rendle, Trans. Linn. Soc. London, Bot. 4: 56 (1894).

Type of Basionym or Protologue Information: HT: A. Whyte s.n., Oct, Malawi: Mount Milanje (BM).

Habit. Perennial. Rhizomes absent or present, elongated. Stolons absent or present. Culms erect or geniculately ascending or decumbent, 20–250 cm tall, 2–5 -noded. Mid-culm internodes glabrous. Mid-culm nodes glabrous. Lateral branches simple. Leaf-sheaths glabrous on surface. Leaf-sheath auricles present. Ligule an eciliate membrane. Leaf-blades flat, 6–30 cm long, 3–13 mm wide. Leaf-blade surface smooth, glabrous.

Inflorescence. Inflorescence digitate. Racemes 2–18, straight, 5–25 cm long. Central inflorescence axis 0–6 cm long.

Spikelets. Spikelets pedicelled, 2 in the cluster. 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, dorsally compressed, (1.7–)2.5–3.2(–3.5) mm long. Rhachilla internodes brief up to lowest fertile floret.

Glumes. Glumes dissimilar, thinner than fertile lemma. Lower glume ovate, membranous, without keels, 1 -nerved. Upper glume lanceolate, 1.5–2.1 mm long, membranous, without keels, 3 -nerved. Upper glume surface glabrous or indumented. Florets. Basal sterile florets 1, barren, without significant palea. Lemma of lower sterile floret 100 % of length of spikelet, membranous, 7 -nerved.

Fertile lemma 1.7–3.5 mm long, without keel. Lemma apex muticous. Lodicules present.

Continental Distribution: Africa and Australasia.

Australian Distribution: Queensland.

Notes. Introduced. One of several members of the section Erianthae introduced into Australia for improved pastures, and the only member of this group which is naturalized. Flowers Feb.-Apr.



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