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Genus Rytidosperma Family Poaceae

Synonyms: Austrodanthonia APNI*

Description: Tufted perennials.

Ligule ciliate rim; blade folded in bud, flat or convolute, usually narrow and often hairy, long hairs usually present at orifice.

Inflorescence and open to spike like and contracted panicle (occasionally a raceme) with a few spikelets, white or pale at maturity. Spikelets pedicelate, disarticulating above the glumes and between the florets, 3–9 bisexual florets, often with male or sterile florets above. Glumes subequal, acute, broad-keeled, longer than the lemma, faintly 5–7-nerved (often streaked with purple), margins translucent, gaping at maturity to reveal the hairy florets. Lemmas soft to leathery, rounded on the back with a few to many hairs more or less organised into tufts, transverse rows, or rows of tufts occasionally galbrous or with the tufts reduced, or with a more or less continuous indumentum in the lower 50%; apex deeply bilobed, the lobes acute, usually terminating in slender bristles; awn arising in the sinus between the lobes reflexed or genticulate and usually twisted; callus bearded. Palea as long as or longer than the body of the lemma, 2-keeled, keels ciliate, apex entire or bifid.

Spikelets with 3–5 florets, rachilla internodes 30–50% as long as the lemmas, disarticulating above the glumes and between the lemmas. Glumes shorter or longer than the spikelet. Lemmas minutely 3-toothed, glabrous or with scattered hairs; callus blunt. Palea glabrous, keels ciliate.


Distribution and occurrence: World: 60 species, Australia & New Zealand. Australia: 27 species all States except Northern Territory.

Rytidosperma unarede is in Lord Howe Island and not included in the key. Key based on: Simon, B.K. & Alfonso, Y. 2011. AusGrass2, http://ausgrass2.myspecies.info/category/australian-grasses/australian-grasses/rytidosperma, 10 August 2012. key reconfigured for NSW species by Louisa Murray

Taxa not yet included in identification key
Rytidosperma unarede

 Key to the species 
1Callus up to twice the length of the spikelet axis internode2
Callus greater than twice the length of the spikelet axis internode10
2Hairs on the lemma forming a continuous indumentum, sometimes with tufts on the upper margin; leaves not disarticulating3
Hairs on the lemma in two untidy rows, most of lemma surface glabrous and shiny, leaves often disarticulating from sheath
                       Back to 1
6
3Marginal hair tufts absent; anthers redRytidosperma pallidum
Marginal hair tufts present; anther yellow to orange
                       Back to 2
4
4Lateral lobes shortly awnedRytidosperma longifolium
Lateral lobes not or minutely awned
                       Back to 3
5
5Leaf-sheaths glabrousRytidosperma semiannulare
Leaf-sheaths distinctly pilose
                       Back to 4
Rytidosperma gracile
6Spikelet axis internode 1/3–1/2 lemma length7
Spikelet axis internode up to 1/4 lemma length
                       Back to 2
8
7Lemma c. 2.5 mm long, ±hairyRytidosperma pumilum
Lemma c. 2 mm long, glabrous
                       Back to 6
Rytidosperma australe
8Lateral lobes distinctly longer than the body of lemmaRytidosperma nudiflorum
Lateral lobes shorter than or only slightly longer than body of lemma
                       Back to 6
9
9Leaf blades tightly inrolled, florets shorter than glumes except for the exserted awns; central awn well separated from lateral lobesRytidosperma nivicola
9*Leaf blades flat at base, becoming folded or slightly inrolled; florets exserted from glumes; central awn scarcely separated from lateral lobesRytidosperma vickeryae
10Lemma with hairs only in distinct transverse rows of tufts on back11
Lemma with hairs scattered uniformly over back instead of or as well as hairs in tufts
                       Back to 1
25
11Lemma with a complete transverse row of hair-tufts just below sinus12
Lemma with marginal and/or dorsal tufts of hair below sinus sometimes forming an interrupted row
                       Back to 10
23
12Lemma without a row of hair-tufts above callusRytidosperma laeve
Lemma with a row of hair-tufts above callus
                       Back to 11
13
13Outer margins of lateral lobes with auriclesRytidosperma auriculatum
Outer margins of lateral lobes without auricles
                       Back to 12
14
14Body of lemma golden brown at maturityRytidosperma duttonianum
Body of lemma pale at maturity
                       Back to 13
15
15Body of lemma 1.25–3 mm long16
Body of lemma 3 mm or more long
                       Back to 14
18
16Lateral lobes less than 6 mm longRytidosperma setaceum
Lateral lobes 6–10 mm long
                       Back to 15
17
17Setae of lateral lobes 2–4 mm longRytidosperma monticola
Setae of lateral lobes 4–6 mm long
                       Back to 16
Rytidosperma setaceum
18Setae much shorter than flat portion of lateral lobes19
Setae ± as long as flat portion of lateral lobes
                       Back to 15
21
19Palea 7–8mm long, ±equaling flat part of lemma lateral lobesRytidosperma indutum
Palea to 6mm long, shorter than flat part of lemma lateral lobes
                       Back to 18
20
20Palea broad, 1–3 times as long as wideRytidosperma oreophilum
Palea narrow, 3–5 times as long as wide
                       Back to 19
Rytidosperma tenuius
21Palea up to 3 mm wideRytidosperma erianthum
Palea less than 2 mm wide
                       Back to 18
22
22Leaves 5–10 cm long, thick and rigidRytidosperma alpicola
Leaves 10–30 cm long, not thick and rigid
                       Back to 21
Rytidosperma caespitosum
23Inflorescence 3–5 cm longRytidosperma pilosum
Inflorescence 5–15 cm long
                       Back to 11
24
24Spikelets 4–6-floweredRytidosperma penicillatum
Spikelets 7–10-flowered
                       Back to 23
Rytidosperma racemosum
25Lateral lobes shorter than body of lemmaRytidosperma carphoides
Lateral lobes equal to or longer than body of lemma
                       Back to 10
26
26Lateral lobes 2–3 times as long as body of lemmaRytidosperma monticola
Lateral lobes less than twice as long as body of lemma or latter at least 3mm long
                       Back to 25
27
27Lemma hairs uniformly short (about 0.5 mm long) except for those directly below sinus28
Lemma hairs grading from 1mm long at base to 5 mm long at apex
                       Back to 26
29
28Body of lemma less than 3 mm longRytidosperma setaceum
Body of lemma at least 3 mm long
                       Back to 27
Rytidosperma alpicola
29Central awn reflexed or loosely twisted at base30
Central awn strongly twisted at base
                       Back to 27
31
30Palea broadly obovate, obtuse; body of lemma 4–6 mm longRytidosperma richardsonii
Palea lanceolate-elliptic, acute; body of lemma 3–3.5 mm long
                       Back to 29
Rytidosperma bipartitum
31Body of lemma 3–4 mm long; palea less than 5 mm longRytidosperma fulvum
Body of lemma 4–5.5 mm long; palea 6–8 mm long
                       Back to 29
Rytidosperma indutum

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