Sporobolus panicoides A. Rich.

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Sporobolus panicoides

Photo: Mike Bingham
Lusaka SE 13km., Protea Hill Farm.

Sporobolus panicoides

Photo: Mike Bingham
Lusaka SE 13km., Protea Hill Farm.

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Species details: Click on each item to see an explanation of that item (Note: opens a new window)

Synonyms: Sporobolus polyclados Hack.
Common names:
Status: Native
Loosely tufted annual; culms up to 100 cm tall, erect, often branched below; leaf sheaths chartaceous, glabrous on the back, pilose near the margins, slightly compressed; leaf laminas 5–30 cm × 2–6 mm, flat or involute, sparsely pilose above, glabrous beneath, not pectinate-ciliate on the margins, attenuate at the apex. Panicle 4–22 cm long, narrowly elliptic; with branches in a succession of whorls, scaberulous, eglandular, the spikelets 1–4 per branch (but 0–2 on those of the lowermost whorl), evenly distributed in the distal part.Spikelets 2–2.7 mm long, pallid with purple tinge below; inferior glume 1/3–2/5 the length of the spikelet, rarely minute, narrowly ovate, nerveless, glabrous, obtuse to subacute at the apex; superior glume as long as the spikelet, ovate, 1-nerved, glabrous, acute at the apex; lemma a little shorter than the spikelet, elliptic-ovate; anthers 3, 1.2–1.5 mm long. Grain rotund or subrotund.
Notes: “A species easily recognised by the large rotund grain, the sparsity of spikelets on the panicle branches and the partially or completely sterile lowermost branch whorl.” (F.Z. p. 170) Late-flowering (February)
Derivation of specific name:
Habitat: In sparse grassland, footpaths, peripheral zone of termite mound-complexes.
Flowering time:Feb
Worldwide distribution: East tropical Africa from Sudan to South Africa.
Regional Distribution: Zambia, Malawi, Mozambique, Namibia, Zimbabwe, Botswana
Botswana distribution: N,SE
Growth form(s):
Endemic status:
Red data list status:
Insects associated with this species:
Spot characters: Display spot characters for this species

Chapano, C. & Mugarisanwa, N.H. (2003). Plants of the Matobo District National Herbarium and Botanic Garden, Zimbabwe Page 34.

Cope, T.A. (1999). Poaceae Flora Zambesiaca 10(2) Pages 169 - 170.

Heath, A. & Heath, R. (2009). Field Guide to the Plants of Northern Botswana including the Okavango Delta Kew Publishing Page 488. (Includes a picture).

Jackson, G. & Wiehe, P.O. (1958). An Annotated Check List of Nyasaland Grasses The Government Printer, Zomba, Nyasaland Page 61.

Klaassen Esmerialda, E.S. & Craven P. (2003). Checklist of grasses in Namibia SABONET Report No. 20 Page 83.

Mapaura, A. & Timberlake, J. (eds) (2004). A checklist of Zimbabwean vascular plants Southern African Botanical Diversity Network Report No. 33 Sabonet, Pretoria and Harare Page 110.

Pickering, H. & Roe, E. (2009). Wild Flowers of the Victoria Falls Area Helen Pickering, London Page 97. (Includes a picture).

Setshogo, M.P. (2005). Preliminary checklist of the plants of Botswana. Sabonet Report no. 37. Sabonet, Pretoria and Gaborone Page 146.

Other sources of information about Sporobolus panicoides:

Our websites:

Flora of Caprivi: Sporobolus panicoides
Flora of Malawi: Sporobolus panicoides
Flora of Mozambique: Sporobolus panicoides
Flora of Zambia: Sporobolus panicoides
Flora of Zimbabwe: Sporobolus panicoides

External websites:

African Plants: A Photo Guide (Senckenberg): Sporobolus panicoides
African Plant Database: Sporobolus panicoides
BHL (Biodiversity Heritage Library): Sporobolus panicoides
EOL (Encyclopedia of Life): Sporobolus panicoides
GBIF (Global Biodiversity Information Facility): Sporobolus panicoides
Google: Web - Images - Scholar
iNaturalist: Sporobolus panicoides
IPNI (International Plant Names Index): Sporobolus panicoides
JSTOR Plant Science: Sporobolus panicoides
Mansfeld World Database of Agricultural and Horticultural Crops: Sporobolus panicoides
Plants of the World Online: Sporobolus panicoides
Tropicos: Sporobolus panicoides
Wikipedia: Sporobolus panicoides

Copyright: Mark Hyde, Bart Wursten, Petra Ballings and Meg Coates Palgrave, 2014-24

Hyde, M.A., Wursten, B.T., Ballings, P. & Coates Palgrave, M. (2024). Flora of Botswana: Species information: Sporobolus panicoides.
https://www.botswanaflora.com/speciesdata/species.php?species_id=105550, retrieved 25 July 2024

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