Description: Tufted, slender annuals.
Leaves with ligule a membranous rim; blade folded in bud, sometimes with glands.
Inflorescence of condensed racemes, each subtended by a small spathe, groups of racemes subtended by larger spathes (with a blade or sheath) all together forming a leafy panicle.
Spikelets dissimilar, each raceme comprising a subterminal involucre of 4 pedicellate male or sterile spikelets, above which is a terminal triplet of 1 subsessile fertile spikelet and 2 pedicellate male or sterile spikelets, the raceme falling as a unit. Fertile spikelets dorsally compressed, awned, often very shortly pedicellate and differing in shape from the other spikelets. Glumes subequal, 2-keeled, the lower usually 2-toothed. Lemmas 2, dissimilar, the lower small transparent and nerveless, the upper consisting of a small base attached to a geniculate awn. Paleas absent. Pedicellate spikelets dorsally compressed, on slender
Distribution and occurrence: World: c. 20 species, Australia & India. Australia: c. 14 species (native), all mainland States except Vic.
Text by S. W. L. Jacobs & C. A. Wall
| ||Key to the species|| |
|1||Plants usually 45–60 cm high; leaf sheaths and stems often purple; racemes usually enclosed in the spathes which are rounded and hardened at maturity, falling with the spathes at maturity||Iseilema vaginiflorum|
|Plants usually less than 30 cm high; leaf sheaths and stems of young plants greenish; racemes exserted from the spathes which are strongly keeled and papery; axis not breaking up readily at maturity||Iseilema membranaceum|