Skip to main content
This species is accepted, and its native range is Cameroon to Ethiopia and Tanzania.
A specimen from Kew's Herbarium

[GB]
Morphology General Habit
Perennial. Culms decumbent, or rambling; 60-200 cm long; rooting from lower nodes. Culm-nodes black. Ligule a fringe of hairs. Leaf-blades linear, or lanceolate; 10-45 cm long; 8-30 mm wide; membranous.
Morphology Reproductive morphology Inflorescences
Synflorescence compound; scanty. Inflorescence a panicle; terminal and axillary. Panicle spiciform; linear; 10-25 cm long. Primary panicle branches accrescent to a central axis; with sessile scars on axis. Panicle axis with rounded ribs; scaberulous; glabrous; bearing deciduous spikelet clusters. Spikelets subtended by an involucre. Fertile spikelets sessile; 1-3 in the cluster. Involucre composed of bristles; oblong; 5-9 mm long; base obtuse, or bluntly stipitate (indistinctly). Involucral bristles deciduous with the fertile spikelets; numerous; 15-30 in principal whorl; with one conspicuously longer bristle; 10-30 mm long; terete; flexible; glabrous.
Morphology Reproductive morphology Inflorescences Spikelets
Spikelets comprising 1 basal sterile florets; 1 fertile florets; without rhachilla extension. Spikelets lanceolate; dorsally compressed; acute, or acuminate; 4-7 mm long; falling entire; deciduous with accessory branch structures.
Fertile
Spikelets comprising 1 basal sterile florets; 1 fertile florets; without rhachilla extension. Spikelets lanceolate; dorsally compressed; acute, or acuminate; 4-7 mm long; falling entire; deciduous with accessory branch structures.
Morphology Reproductive morphology Inflorescences Bracts Glume
Glumes dissimilar; shorter than spikelet; thinner than fertile lemma. Lower glume lanceolate; 0.1-0.25 length of spikelet; hyaline; without keels; 1 -veined. Lower glume lateral veins absent. Lower glume apex acute. Upper glume oblong; 0.25-0.5 length of spikelet; membranous; without keels; 3-5 -veined. Upper glume apex acuminate.
Morphology Reproductive morphology Flowers Florets
Basal sterile florets male, or barren; with palea, or without significant palea. Lemma of lower sterile floret ovate; 1 length of spikelet; membranous; 5-7 -veined; scaberulous; acuminate. Palea of lower sterile floret scabrous; adorned on keels. Fertile lemma ovate; 4-7 mm long; chartaceous; without keel; 5 -veined. Lemma surface scaberulous. Lemma margins flat. Lemma apex acute, or acuminate. Palea chartaceous.
Morphology Reproductive morphology Flowers
Lodicules absent. Anthers 3; 2-3 mm long; anther tip smooth.
Morphology Reproductive morphology Fruits
Caryopsis with adherent pericarp; oblong; dorsally compressed; 2.5 mm long.
Distribution
Africa: west-central tropical, northeast tropical, and east tropical.
Reference
Paniceae. FTEA.

[FWTA]

Gramineae, W. D. Clayton. Flora of West Tropical Africa 3:2. 1972

Morphology General Habit
Perennial up to 2 m. high.

[FTEA]

Gramineae, W. D. Clayton, S. M. Phillips & S. A. Renvoize. Flora of Tropical East Africa. 1974

Morphology General Habit
Perennial; culms 60–200 cm. high, ascending and rooting at the nodes, sometimes scrambling, the nodes black.
Morphology Leaves
Leaf-blades linear-lanceolate, mostly 10–45 cm. long, 8–30 mm. wide, thin.
Morphology Reproductive morphology Inflorescences
Panicles linear, 10–25 cm. long, moderately lax, occasionally with slender side branches at the base, terminal and axillary forming a sparse false panicle; rhachis with rounded ribs bearing indistinct flat or oblique stumpless scars of fallen involucres, scaberulous; involucre enclosing 1–3 sessile spikelets, composed of 15–30 bristles with a very short indistinct stipe; bristles glabrous, the longest 10–30 mm.
Morphology Reproductive morphology Inflorescences Spikelets
Spikelets lanceolate, 4–7 mm. long; lower glume up to 1/4 the length of the spikelet, the upper glume 1/4–1/2; lemmas equalling the spikelet, the lower ♂ or barren, the upper firmer in texture and minutely scaberulous above.
Habitat
Pathsides and glades in semi-shade of rain-forest or dry evergreen forest, favouring moist soils; 1000–2500 m.
Distribution
K1 K3 K4 K5 K6 T2 T3 T5 T6 T7 U2 U3

Native to:

Burundi, Cameroon, Ethiopia, Kenya, Rwanda, Sudan, Tanzania, Uganda, Zaïre

Cenchrus trachyphyllus (Pilg.) Morrone appears in other Kew resources:

Date Reference Identified As Barcode Type Status
May 1, 1932 Ross, F.J. [166], Tanzania Pennisetum trachyphyllum K000281229
Holst, C. [3253], Tanzania Pennisetum trachyphyllum K000281228 isosyntype

First published in Ann. Bot. (Oxford) 106: 129 (2010)

Accepted by

  • Govaerts, R., Nic Lughadha, E., Black, N., Turner, R. & Paton, A. (2021). The World Checklist of Vascular Plants, a continuously updated resource for exploring global plant diversity. https://doi.org/10.1038/s41597-021-00997-6 Scientific Data 8: 215.

Literature

Kew Backbone Distributions

  • Clayton, W.D. & Renvoize, S.A. (1982). Gramineae Flora of Tropical East Africa 3: 451-898.
  • Hedberg, I. & Edwards, S. (eds.) (1995). Flora of Ethiopia and Eritrea 7: 1-430. The National Herbarium, Addis Ababa University, Ethiopia & The Department of Systematic Botany, Upps.
  • Hepper, F.N. (ed.) (1972). Flora of West Tropical Africa, ed. 2, 3(2): 277-574.
  • Ndabaneze, P. (1989). Catalogue des Graminées du Burundi Lejeunia; Revue de Botanique, n.s., 132: 1-127.
  • Troupin, G. (ed.) (1988). Flora du Rwanda 4: I-X, 1-651. Musee Royal de l'Afrique Centrale.

Flora of Tropical East Africa
Flora of Tropical East Africa
http://creativecommons.org/licenses/by-nc-sa/3.0

Flora of West Tropical Africa
Flora of West Tropical Africa
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
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 2021. 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 2021. 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