Ophiuros exaltatus

Ophiuros exaltatus (L.) Kuntze. Rev.
Gen. Pl.
2: 780 (1891).

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

Basionym and/or
Replacement Name:
L., Mant. Pl. 2: 575 (1771).

Type of Basionym or
Protologue Information
: India.

Recent synonyms:
O. megaphyllus.

Key references
(books and floras):
[1810]. R.Brown, Prodromus (207 as Ophiuros
), [1878] G.Bentham, Flora Australiensis 7 (512 as Ophiuros
), [1952] C.A.Gardner, Flora of Western Australia 1 Gramineae
(312), [1969] E.E.Henty, Manual Grasses New Guinea (129 as O.
), [2002] D.Sharp & B.K.Simon, AusGrass, Grasses of

[1952] C.A.Gardner, Flora of Western Australia 1 Gramineae (313,
Pl. 92).

Perennial. Culms stature robust to moderate, 150–250(–400) cm tall. Lateral
branches branched. Leaf-sheaths hairy. Ligule an eciliate membrane. Leaf-blades
linear or elliptic, flat or convolute, 50–100 cm long, 10–40 mm wide.
Leaf-blade surface glabrous or indumented.

Inflorescence compound, composed of spikes. Rhachis fragile at the nodes.

Spikelets sessile, 1 in the cluster. Companion spikelets pedicelled, 1 in the
cluster. Companion spikelets represented by barren pedicels. 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, oblong or ovate, dorsally compressed, 2.5–4 mm long.

Glumes dissimilar, firmer than fertile lemma. Lower glume oblong or ovate,
cartilaginous or coriaceous, without keels or keeled, 2-keeled, 5–9 -nerved.
Lower glume surface glabrous. Upper glume elliptic or ovate, hyaline or
membranous, 1–3 -nerved. Upper glume surface glabrous. Florets. Basal
sterile florets 1, barren, with palea. Lemma of lower sterile floret hyaline.

Fertile lemma without

: Temperate Asia, Tropical Asia, and Australasia.

: Western Australia, Northern Territory, Queensland.

Western Australia:
Gardner. Northern Territory: Darwin & Gulf, Victoria River. Queensland:
Burke, Cook, Leichhardt, North Kennedy, Port Curtis, South Kennedy.

Notes. Occurs
from India and China to tropical Australia in seasonally wet grasslands and
open savannas on heavy soils. Flowers Jan.--Oct.


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