1. Family: Poaceae Barnhart
    1. Genus: Aristida L.
      1. Aristida diffusa Trin.

        This species is accepted, and its native range is Zimbabwe to S. Africa.

    [FZ]

    Gramineae, E. Launert. Flora Zambesiaca 10:1. 1971

    Habit
    Perennial, up to 75 cm. high, densely to laxly caespitose.
    Culms
    Culms erect, slender, simple or rarely branched, glabrous, 1- to several-noded; nodes glabrous.
    Leaf sheaths
    Leaf-sheaths firm, glabrous, or the lower densely woolly.
    Ligules
    Ligule a short-ciliate rim; auricles pubescent or glabrous; collar glabrous.
    Leaf lamina
    Leaf-laminae up to 30 x 0·25-3 cm., involute, setaceous, curved or flexuous, the upper exceeding the panicle, scaberulous or hispidulous above, smooth beneath.
    Inflorescences
    Panicle up to 30 cm. long, or longer, lax, open, with a smooth axis; branches c. 15 cm. long, 2- or 3-nate, filiform or capillary, more or less spreading, remote, flexuous, scaberulous or smooth.
    Spikelets
    Spikelets yellowish, yellowish-brown to purple, purplish-brown, suberect to nodding.
    Glume
    Glumes unequal, rather firm, 1-nerved, glabrous, obtuse or slightly emarginate with a glabrous keel; the inferior 4-9 mm. long, fairly broad, obtuse; the superior 10-17 mm. long, narrow, with a subacute but slightly 2-fid apex.
    Lemma
    Lemma 9-13 mm. long, smooth, or slightly scaberulous towards the apex; callus c. 1 mm. long, 2-fid, barbate; column 2-6 mm. long, slightly twisted; awns fine, subequal, scabrous, the central awn up to 23-25 mm. long, the later ones 20-30 mm. long; articulation between the apex of the lemma and the base of the column.
    [GB]
    Habit
    Perennial; caespitose. Butt sheaths glabrous, or woolly. Culms erect; 40-75 cm long. Culm-internodes distally glabrous. Ligule a fringe of hairs. Leaf-blades curled; filiform; involute; 10-30 cm long; 2.5-3 mm wide. Leaf-blade surface scaberulous; rough adaxially.
    Inflorescences
    Inflorescence a panicle; shorter than basal leaves. Panicle open; elliptic; effuse; 15-30 cm long. Primary panicle branches spreading; distant; 2-3 -nate; 10-15 cm long. Panicle branches capillary; flexuous. Spikelets solitary. Fertile spikelets pedicelled.
    Spikelets
    Spikelets comprising 1 fertile florets; without rhachilla extension. Spikelets lanceolate; subterete; 10-17 mm long; breaking up at maturity; disarticulating below each fertile floret. Floret callus elongated; 1 mm long; pilose; 2-toothed.
    Fertile
    Spikelets comprising 1 fertile florets; without rhachilla extension. Spikelets lanceolate; subterete; 10-17 mm long; breaking up at maturity; disarticulating below each fertile floret. Floret callus elongated; 1 mm long; pilose; 2-toothed.
    Glume
    Glumes persistent; similar; exceeding apex of florets; thinner than fertile lemma. Lower glume lanceolate; 4-9 mm long; 0.4-0.5 length of upper glume; membranous; 1-keeled; 1 -veined. Lower glume lateral veins absent. Lower glume apex obtuse. Upper glume lanceolate; 10-17 mm long; 1.1-1.3 length of adjacent fertile lemma; membranous; 1-keeled; 1 -veined. Upper glume lateral veins absent. Upper glume apex emarginate.
    Florets
    Fertile lemma elliptic; subterete; 9-13 mm long; coriaceous; without keel; 3 -veined. Lemma surface smooth, or asperulous; rough above. Lemma margins convolute; covering most of palea. Lemma apex acute; awned; 3 -awned. Principal lemma awn 3-branched; with 20-30 mm long limb; with a straight or slightly twisted column; deciduous; abscissing from top of lemma. Column of lemma awn 2-6 mm long. Lateral lemma awns 20-30 mm long; subequal to principal. Palea 0.1 length of lemma; without keels.
    Flowers
    Anthers 3.
    Distribution
    Africa: southern tropical and south.
    Reference
    Aristideae. FZ.

    Images

    Distribution

    Native to:

    Cape Provinces, Free State, KwaZulu-Natal, Lesotho, Northern Provinces, Zimbabwe

    Aristida diffusa Trin. appears in other Kew resources:

    Date Reference Identified As Barcode Type Status
    May 1, 1937 South Africa K000366744 Unknown type material
    May 1, 1937 Ecklon [976], South Africa K000366747 Unknown type material
    May 1, 1937 Schlechter, M. [10652], South Africa K000366743 Unknown type material
    May 1, 1937 Shrader [s.n.], South Africa K000366745
    South Africa K000366750
    Zeyher [s.n.], South Africa K000366749
    Drege [s.n.], South Africa K000366748 Unknown type material
    Drege [s.n.], South Africa K000366751
    Ecklon [976], South Africa K000366746 Unknown type material

    First published in Bull. Sci. Acad. Imp. Sci. Saint-Pétersbourg 1: 68 (1830)

    Accepted by

    • Clayton, W.D., Harman, K.T. & Williamson, H. (2006). World Grass Species - Synonymy database The Board of Trustees of the Royal Botanic Gardens, Kew.
    • Germishuizen, G. & Meyer, N.L. (eds.) (2003). Plants of Southern Africa: an annotated checklist. Strelitzia 14.: i-vi, 1-1231. National Botanical Institute, Pretoria.

    Literature

    Kew Backbone Distributions
    • Launert, E. (1971). Flora Zambesiaca 10(1): 1-152. Royal Botanic Gardens, Kew.

    Sources

    Flora Zambesiaca
    Flora Zambesiaca
    http://creativecommons.org/licenses/by-nc-sa/3.0

    GrassBase - The Online World Grass Flora
    http://creativecommons.org/licenses/by-nc-sa/3.0

    Herbarium Catalogue Specimens
    'The Herbarium Catalogue, Royal Botanic Gardens, Kew. Published on the Internet http://www.kew.org/herbcat [accessed on Day Month Year]'. Please enter the date on which you consulted the system.
    Digital Image © Board of Trustees, RBG Kew http://creativecommons.org/licenses/by/3.0/

    Kew Backbone Distributions
    The International Plant Names Index and World Checklist of Selected Plant Families 2020. Published on the Internet at http://www.ipni.org and http://apps.kew.org/wcsp/
    © Copyright 2017 World Checklist of Selected Plant Families. http://creativecommons.org/licenses/by/3.0

    Kew Names and Taxonomic Backbone
    The International Plant Names Index and World Checklist of Selected Plant Families 2020. Published on the Internet at http://www.ipni.org and http://apps.kew.org/wcsp/
    © Copyright 2017 International Plant Names Index and World Checklist of Selected Plant Families. http://creativecommons.org/licenses/by/3.0