G.451. Oplismenus P. Beauv. - Basket grasses

Description of the genus

Annual or perennial grasses of shady places and forests. Culms weak, trailing. Leaves: lamina lanceolate to ovate. Inflorescence of 1-sided racemes arranged along a central axis, the spikelets in pairs (the lower often reduced). Spikelets laterally flattened, lanceolate; glumes 1/2 to 3/4 length of spikelet, the lower glume or both glumes tipped by a sticky (scaberulous in O. burmannii) awn; lower lemma acute to shortly awned; upper lemma dorsally flattened, smooth, shiny, coriaceous, with involute margin. A genus of weakly defined species. Clayton comments that O. compositus, O hirtellus and O. undulatifolius differ in appearance and in geographical distribution, but that variation between them is quite continuous and intermediates cannot be assigned to a particular species with certainty. Poecilostachys oplismenoides also resembles an Oplismenus and grows in similar habitats.

Worldwide: 7 species in tropical and warm regions

Malawi: 4 taxa.

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Links to taxa:     View: living plant images - herbarium specimen images - all images for this genus

SpeciesFZ divisionsContent
burmannii (Retz.) P. Beauv.N,C,SDescription, Image
compositus (L.) P. Beauv.N,C,SDescription
hirtellus (L.) P. Beauv.N,SDescription, Image
undulatifolius (Ard.) Roem. & Schult.N,SDescription, Image

Other sources of information about Oplismenus:

Our websites:

Flora of Botswana: Oplismenus
Flora of Caprivi: Oplismenus
Flora of Mozambique: Oplismenus
Flora of Zambia: Oplismenus
Flora of Zimbabwe: Oplismenus

External websites:

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

Copyright: Mark Hyde, Bart Wursten, Petra Ballings and Meg Coates Palgrave, 2014-23

Hyde, M.A., Wursten, B.T., Ballings, P. & Coates Palgrave, M. (2023). Flora of Malawi: Genus page: Oplismenus.
https://www.malawiflora.com/speciesdata/genus.php?genus_id=190, retrieved 21 September 2023

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