Ischaemum afrum (J.F. Gmel.) Dandy

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Ischaemum afrum

Photo: Chrissy Wenham
Malilangwe Reserve, Chiredzi

Ischaemum afrum

Photo: Chrissy Wenham
Malilangwe Reserve, Chiredzi

Ischaemum afrum

Photo: Chrissy Wenham
Malilangwe Reserve, Chiredzi

Ischaemum afrum

Photo: Chrissy Wenham
Malilangwe Reserve, Chiredzi

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

Synonyms: Andropogon afer J.F. Gmel.
Andropogon brachyatherus Hochst.
Ischaemum brachyatherum (Hochst.) Fenzl ex Hack.
Ischaemum glaucostachyum Stapf
Common names: Turf grass (English)
Status: Native
Densely caespitose perennial with scaly rhizome; culms up to 200 cm high; leaf laminas 10–50 cm × 3–10 mm, glaucous, prominently nerved, tapering to a setaceous point. Inflorescence terminal, of (1)2–5 (rarely more) subdigitate racemes, each 6–20 cm long; rhachis internodes and pedicels glabrous to villous, yellowish to purple, subequal, the internodes clavate, the pedicels subinflated. Sessile spikelet 5–8 mm long, lanceolate; inferior glume chartaceous, 2-keeled along its whole length, concave between the keels, glabrous to villous on the back, wingless; superior lemma with an awn 5–20 mm long. Pedicelled spikelet 1–6 mm long, awnless or rarely awned from the superior lemma.
Derivation of specific name:
Habitat: Growing in seasonally flooded grassland on heavy black clay soils
Flowering time:
Worldwide distribution: India, throughout tropical Africa from Nigeria eastwards to Ethiopia and southwards to South Africa
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
Content last updated: Sunday 8 August 2021

Chapano, C. & Mugarisanwa, N.H. (2003). Plants of the Matobo District National Herbarium and Botanic Garden, Zimbabwe Page 22.

Cope, T.A. (2002). Poaceae Flora Zambesiaca 10(4) Pages 51 - 52. (Includes a picture).

Jackson, G. & Wiehe, P.O. (1958). An Annotated Check List of Nyasaland Grasses The Government Printer, Zomba, Nyasaland Page 46. As Isachaemum brachyatherum

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 106.

Roodt, V. (2015). Grasses & Grazers of Botswana and the surrounding savanna Struik Nature, South Africa Pages 146 - 147. (Includes a picture).

Setshogo, M.P. (2005). Preliminary checklist of the plants of Botswana. Sabonet Report no. 37. Sabonet, Pretoria and Gaborone Page 140.

Strugnell, A.M. (2006). A Checklist of the Spermatophytes of Mount Mulanje, Malawi Scripta Botanica Belgica 34 National Botanic Garden of Belgium Page 149.

Other sources of information about Ischaemum afrum:

Our websites:

Flora of Malawi: Ischaemum afrum
Flora of Mozambique: Ischaemum afrum
Flora of Zambia: Ischaemum afrum
Flora of Zimbabwe: Ischaemum afrum

External websites:

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

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: Ischaemum afrum., retrieved 25 May 2024

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