Description: Annual or perennial tufted [or rarely shortly rhizomatous] hispid or pubescent herbs. Culms erect, noded, leafy.
Leaves with well-developed blade; ligule membranous and ciliate.
Inflorescence elongate with distant hemispherical to globose clusters of spikelets; involucral bracts leaf-like. Spikelets terete, usually greyish green. Rachilla persistent, not winged. Glumes spiral, usually long-mucronate, with 3-nerved midrib, hispid. Flowers bisexual. Perianth usually of 3 retrorsely scabrous or smooth bristles shorter than or equalling nut and 3 longer, enlarged scales, exceeding or equalling nut, falling with the nut [rarely absent]. Stamens 2 or 3. Style 3-fid, usually not enlarged at the base, continuous with the ovary, slender base persistent on nut.
Nut triquetrous, obovoid to ovoid, ± stipitate.
Distribution and occurrence: World: c. 30 species, tropical and subtropical. Australia: 5 species (3 species endemic), Qld, N.S.W., N.T., W.A.
Text by K. L. Wilson
| ||Key to the species|| |
|1||Perianth scales more or less square in outline with sagittate base, and with 3 nerves often extending as 3 minute teeth along the top||Fuirena ciliaris|
|Perianth scales pentagonal in outline with tapering to truncate base, 3–5-nerved, and with inflated, obtuse to acute apex with long mucro||Fuirena incrassata|