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ID: A grass in flower? SOLVED: Sedge

7 replies to this topic

#1 Andrea B.

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Posted 04 July 2013 - 22:05

Can anyone get me started on identifying this grass?
I know nothing about grasses.
This specimen has a very nice UV signature.

Thank you.

Vis
Attached Image: grassUnkVisSun_050313twinPines_10880origProofPn.jpg

UV, cropped only. Not yet colour corrected.
Attached Image: grassUnkUVBaadSB14_050313twinPines_10871origProofPn.jpg
Andrea G. Blum
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#2 nfoto

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Posted 04 July 2013 - 22:27

You are looking in the wrong family. This belongs to the Cyperaceae or Sedge Family.

#3 Andrea B.

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Posted 04 July 2013 - 22:39

Thank you. That will get me started !! My printed Colorado flora covers "grasses".

I was using "grass" in a non-technical sense. Grass, the green stuff that cows eat.
Andrea G. Blum
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#4 nfoto

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Posted 04 July 2013 - 22:41

Good grief. Cows won't eat this stuff. It'll cut their tongues. So will you when you mix two families that different.

Try Carex as a starting point.

#5 Andrea B.

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Posted 05 July 2013 - 00:16

  • Stems jointed, hollow.
    • Poaceae (True Grass Family)
      • annual or perennial herbs
      • jointed, round, hollow stems which are solid at joints
      • linear, parallel-veined leaves
      • leaves 2-ranked, alternate
      • tiny flowers borne between
        • palea = small, scale-like inner bract
        • lemma = larger outer bract
      • filaments attach to middle of anthers
      • floret = flower + lemma + palea
      • florets supported by 2 bracts (glumes) [OK, I know what they mean.]
      • flowers arranged in spikelets = florets + glumes
      • leaves of most grasses clasp the stem
        Near the clasp might be
        • auricles = 2 ear-like lobes
        • ligule = membranous, open, collar-like flap or sheath [I know what they mean!!!]
  • Stems unjointed, solid.
    • Stems usually 3 sided.
      • Cyperaceae (Sedge Family)
        • usually perennial, often rhizomatous
        • partial to wet places
        • solid, unjointed stems that are triangular in cross-section
        • leaves 3-ranked, spirally arranged
        • sheaths usually closed, margins fused
        • filaments attach to end of anther
        • flowers arranged in spikelets, dense clusters
        • many sedges have sharp cutting edges on the leaves, some are minutely sawtoothed
    • Stems usually cylindrical.
      • Juncaceae (Rush Family)
        • usually perennial with rhizomes
        • solid (pithy), unjointed stems that are circular in cross-section
        • tiny flowers that resemble minature brown lilies [What ? Tiny brown lilies ??]
        • flower has 2 series of 3 scale-like floral bracts
        • fruits are small 1- or 3- chambered capsules
Grass jointed hollow, palea/lemma/glume spikelet, filamentCenterAnther
Sedge unjointed solid, sharp, spikelet filamentEndAnther
Andrea G. Blum
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#6 Andrea B.

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Posted 05 July 2013 - 00:48

OK, I now know that the ornamental blue thing I bought is a grass-grass
because I see a solid stemmed spikelet with lemma/palea/glume stuff.

I found a short-leaved grass-grass growing in my Herb Garden which had joints and sheaths.

The very long bladed invasive thing in my Herb Garden, I could not yet figure out.
I couldn't find a stem. I guess they are not there yet?
I had thought this was a weed called "nut grass" (a sedge).
But the leaves seem not to be in threes. They seem sharp-ish.
They are parallel veined. There is no tuber in the roots when I pulled them out.
Still too young maybe? I will have to let one of these go to flower to figure it out.

It started getting dark out, so I had to postpone learning grasses until tomorrow.
It's now time to tend to the Kitteh who needs to be brought in from the porch
and coaxed to eat.
Andrea G. Blum
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#7 nfoto

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Posted 05 July 2013 - 08:07

Look closely at a flowering Juncus and you'll see the description is apt. The tiny flowers appear as a lily only scaled down 10 times or more. Colours of the perianth usually are brownish, sometimes white.

Congratulations on your monocot exploration. Plenty of interesting stuff and gems to be dug out there.

#8 Andrea B.

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Posted 05 July 2013 - 14:56

Thank you!! I have always wanted to learn a bit about grasses, sedges and rushes. I had thought that perhaps I could not stuff any more botancal facts into my head, but apparently we can soak up endless amounts of knowledge - with some study of course. So I'm going to have a try. At least I will be able to separate the three things I see most often into their Orders - when they are in bloom. That's a start.
And there's plenty around here to learn from.
Andrea G. Blum
Often found hanging out with flowers & bees.