Monday 1 October 2012

Bromopsis inermis - Hungarian Brome

Grass of the Month for October 2012

This plant is tall.
The blades emerge all the way up the stem, not just near the base.
It can occasionally be found growing on road verges - it is taller than other common "waist high" verge species.

The panicles are erect (i.e. not drooping), and look elegant
The spikelets are 2.5-3.5cm long . The lemmas have awns less than 3 mm long, or in 2/3 of cases there are no awns.

Here is a picture I took on 28 Sept (almost October)
I went out a couple of evenings ago to take this shot to make sure it is still there.. so I can include it in October!. This year is the first time I have seen it at this site near the old paper mill.

The emerging leaves are rolled, the blades are hairless, and up to 9 mm wide. The ligule is very short,

Quoting from Cope and Gray:-
"Classified as a neophyte, B inermis was first cultivated in Britain in 1794 and was widely sown for fodder and pheasant food."

Click for distribution in UK as in BSBI hectad maps
Hungarian Brome near Stainforth as seen by
Grasses, Sedges and Rushes course at Malham 2012.
Note panicles in foreground. Look at the silhouette of the leaves
in front to the man's dark trousers- it shows
how the blades occur high up in the shoot.

The dead sheaths near the shoot base are black. The rhizomes have red sheaths. These features make the plant easily identifiable.

Here a plant has been pulled up to reveal the rhizomes with dark red scales,
and black lower sheaths at the base of the shoot. The plant grows in patches. Students from a course at Kindrogan Field Centres are looking at this plant.

Hungarian Brome in June 2010

(See other months' grasses)

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