Guide to plants of northern and east-central Mali



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Plantaginaceae

Plantago


Plantago ciliata

records: Sahara (Boudet)




Plumbaginaceae

Plumbago


Plumbago zeylanica 50484 (white leadwort)

records: Hombori (only record, Boudet)

habitat: crevices (Hombori) (Boudet)

notes: branching shrub, white flowers opening from long thin tubes, in racemes, leaves ovate 30 cm x 15 cm



Poaceae (= Gramineae)


[true grasses]

Kew grass database http://www.kew.org/data/grasses-db/sppindex.htm

key reference: Pierre Poilecot. Les poacées du Niger, Boissiera vol. 56
subfamilies and tribes

Arundinoideae

Aristideae (Aristida, Stipagrostis)

Arundineae (Crypsis, Phragmites)

Danthoneae (Elytrophorus)

Bambusoideae

Oryzodae or subfamily Oryzaceae (Oryza [rice])

Bambuseae (Oxytenanthera)

Centothecoideae

Chloridoideae

Pappophoreae (Enneapogon)

Cynodonteae (Chloris, Chrysochloa, Ctenium, Cynodon, Enteropogon, Leptothrium, Microchloa, Schoenefeldia, Tetrapogon, Tragus)

Eragrostidae (Acrachne, Coelachyrum, Dactyloctenium, Dinebra, Eleusine, Eragrostis, Leptochloa, Oropetium, Sporobolus, Tripogon)

Panicoideae

Arundinelleae (Loudetia)

Paniceae (Acroceras, Alloteropsis, Anthephora, Brachiaria, Cenchrus, Digitaria, Echinochloa, Eriochloa, Panicum, Paspalidium, Paspalum, Pennisetum, Sacciolepis, Setaria, Urochloa)

Andropogoneae

subtribe Andropogoninae (Andropogon, Cymbopogon, Dicanthium, Diheteropogon, Hackelochloa, Hemarthria, Hyparrhenia, Hyperthelia, Imperata, Parahyparrhenia, Saccharum, Schizachyrium, Sehima, Sorghum, Vetiveria)

subtribe Rottboelliinae (Chasmopodium, Elionurus, Lasiurus, Rhytachne, Rottbeollia, Vossia)

Maydeae (Zea)

Pooideae

Tritieae (Triticum)


very tall wild species (2m or so): Andropogon gayanus (rocks, hills), Chasmopodium caudatum, Cymbopogon giganteus (culms rise far above leaves), Echinochloa pyramidalis (aquatic or marshes), Echinochloa stagnina (aquatic), Oryza spp. (aquatic wild rices), Panicum subalbidum (shallow water), Paspalidium geminatum (aquatic), Phragmites australis (aquatic), Phragmites karka, Rottboellia cochinchinensis, Sorghum arundinaceum, Vetiveria nigritana (clumps near water), Vossia cuspidata (rivers)

very tiny (excluding spike): Enneapogon desvauxii, Tripogon minimus, Tragus spp.


burrs that cling to clothing: Cenchrus

cottony spikes at top of long stems: Cymbopogon

spikes with long awns: Dicanthium, Diheteropogon, Aristida, Stipagrostis

multiple (4-10) branching spikes: Acrachne, Dactyloctenium, Chloris, Cynodon, Digitaria, Dinebra

single spikes without long awns: Elionurus, Elytrophorus, Tragus

complex panicles: Brachiaria, Eragrostis, Panicum, Sporobolus


Arundinoideae

1. Aristideae (Aristida, Stipagrostis)
Aristida (close to Stipagrostis)

key (Aristida)

formal key < Poilecot

lemma or column not articulated at top: A. adscensionis

lemma or column articulated at top, breaking off at maturity

lemma continuous with awn (no spiral column): A. hordeacea

lemma prolonged by spiral column to base of awns

articulation at the base of the column (well below awns):

lower glume 3-6 mm, longer than upper glume: A. funiculata

lower glume shorter than upper glume

flower with bifid callus

panicle linear, column of awn 5-7 cm long: A. kerstingii

panicle diffuse, column of awn 1.5-3 cm long: A. stipoides

flower with conical callus, column of awn 1-3 cm long: A sieberiana

articulation at the top of the column at the juncture with awns: A. mutabilis

habit:


tall (about 1m), in lax clumps, in sand: A. stipoides, A. sieberiana

A. stipoides: annual; leaf up to 0.5 cm wide flat at base; inflorescence in large, delicate panicles up to 50 cm long; floret (including awn) 5.5-7.5 cm long pale or purple

A. sieberiana: perennial, tinged grey-green; filiform leaf up to 0.2 cm wide often convoluted; inflorescence in linear to lanceolate panicles to 8-25 cm long; floret to 2 cm (excluding awn) yellow or s.t. tinted purple

shorter


A. adscensionis: annual; leaf up to 2 cm long x 0.3 cm wide; panicle up to 30 cm long; coriaceous lemma extends slightly beyond upper glume before 3-pronged awn, central prong of awn 0.7-2.5 cm long, lateral prongs often shorter

A. funiculata: annual; small leaf up to 10 cm long x 0.2 cm wide; sparse linear panicle up to 10 cm long; florets 9-11 cm long including awn; spiral column of awn 3-4.5 cm long; prongs of awn subequal 3.5-4.5 cm long; articulation in middle of column (part of which breaks off with awn)

A. mutabilis: annual; thin (often filiform) leaf up to 14 cm long; narrowly oval panicle 1.2-2 cm long with florets grouped at top of branches; articulation at base of awn (at top of column)

Aristida adscensionis 50502

records: Gao, Adrar, Timbuktu, Bandagara to Mopti (Boudet); Kikara, Beni, Tongo Tongo, Segue (JH)

habitat: sandy soil (Boudet); also in gravel on inselbergs (JH)

notes: forms small bushy clumps; when mature, may have a blackish look; culms 10-100 cm; awns 3-pronged

Aristida funiculata 50503

records: Gao, Bandiagara to Mopti, Macina, Nioro (Boudet); Tupere, Kikara, Boui, Segue (JH)

habitat: sand, also clayey soil

notes: low but dense plant, culms 15-30 cm; leaf 4-10 cm x 0.1-0.2 cm; long awns (much longer than A. mutabilis), 3-pronged; distinguishable from the (also taller) A. kerstingii in that the lower glume extends above the upper glume

Aristida hordeacea

records: Kidal, Macina, Tilemsi (Boudet)

habitat: clayey zones and moist sand

notes: culms 10-90 cm; leaf 5-20 cm x 0.2-0.5 cm; awns 3-pronged

Aristida kerstingii 50696

records: Yanfolila, Koulikoro (Boudet); (if correctly identified) Segue, Bendiely (JH)

habitat: gravelly zones; on inselbergs

notes: annual; culms 30-90 cm; long awns, awns 3-pronged; resembles A. sieberiana; unlike A. funiculata (which is also smaller), the upper glume is longer than the lower glume

Aristida mutabilis 50504

records: Timbuktu, Niono, Tilemsi (Boudet); Boya (near Gao), Hombori, Boui (JH)

habitat: sand

notes: tall not very dense; culms 30-70 cm long; leaf 6-14 cm x 0.1-0.2 cm; fairly long awns (shorter than A. funiculata), 3 pronged, at end of stem

Aristida pungens (see Stipagrostis pungens)

Aristida sieberiana 50505

records: Timbuktu, Gourma Rharous, Niono, Bamako (Boudet); Dianwely, Wakara, Anda (JH)

habitat: dunes, occasionally ravines

notes: perennial; culms 30-100 cm long, woody; lateral branches suffrutescent; leaf 5-30 cm x 0.1-0.2 cm; awns much longer than for A. stipoides, in compact inflorescence (not open inflorescence like A. stipoides)

Aristida stipoides 50507

records: Gao, Ouan Foras, Segou (Boudet); Hombori, Anda (JH)

habitat: dunes

notes: robust annual; long culms 90-150 cm long; leaf flat 15-30 cm x 0.2-0.4 cm; inflorescence widely open (not compact like. A. sieberiana)
Stipagrostis [mostly Saharan, close to Aristida]

Stipagrostis acutiflora

records: Adrar, Araouan (Boudet)

habitat: sand, gravel, rocks

Stipagrostis hirtigluma

records: Kidal (Boudet)

habitat: rocks

Stipagrostis plumosa

records: far north (Boudet)

habitat: gravel, rocks, sand

Stipagrostis pungens (syns Aristida pungens, in part S. vulnerans)

records: Araouan, Azawad (Boudet)

habitat: dunes

taxonomy: Boudet pp. 383-4 refers indications for “Aristida pungens” to S. vulnerans (“probablement”); African Flowering Plants Database (2007) distinguishes S. pungens (N and Tropical Africa) and S. vulnerans (N and Tropical Africa) noting that “S. pungens” has been misapplied by some to S. vulnerans; Kew grass site (2007) distinguishes S. pungens (N and W Africa) from S. vulnerans (N Africa only)

Stipagrostic uniplumus

records: Bamba, Adrar, Kidal (Boudet)

habitat: rocks, sand

Stipagrostis vulnerans (see discussion under S. pungens)
2. Arundineae (Crypsis, Phragmites)
Crypsis

Crypsis schoenoides [introduced]

records: Bamako, Niafunke, Gao-Kokoromme

habitat: depressions after water recedes


Phragmites

Phragmites australis 50703

records: (if correctly identified) near Irigili (Dogulu speaking zone) (JH)

notes: very tall, aquatic, dense inflorescence

Phragmitis karka 50508

records: Kayes (Boudet); Adia (JH)

notes: tall grass 2m, moist areas, dense inflorescence
3. Danthoneae (Elytrophorus)
Elytrophorus

Elytrophorus spicatus

records: Macina, Ansongo, Niono, Gao, Kita (Boudet)

habitat: swamps, old rice fields


Bambusoideae

1. Oryzodae or subfamily Oryzaceae (Oryza)
Oryza [rices]

cultivated

[reference for cultivars: Portères, J. Agric. Trop. 3:833-856, 1956]

Oryza glaberrima (indigenous rice, traditionally cultivated farther south)

Oryza sativa 50540 (rice)



wild

Oryza barthii 50538

records: Niono, Segou (Boudet); Niger R. in Timbuktu-Gao zone, Hombori, margins of ponds near Bore (JH)

habitat: aquatic, weed in rice fields

notes: annual herb (weakly developed roots); distinguished from O. longistaminata by short ligule on lower leaves

Oryza longistaminata 50539

records: Gossi, Gourma Rharous, Mopti (Boudet); Ansongo, Bamba (on Niger R.), Walo, Bounou (JH)

habitat: aquatic, weed in rice fields

notes: perennial herb (well-developed roots); distinguished from O. barthii by long pointed ligule on lower leaves

taxonomy: this sp. was called “O. barthii” in first ed. of FWTA


2. Bambuseae (Oxytenanthera)
Oxytenanthera [bamboo]

Oxytenanthera abyssinica 50510

records: Yanfolila (Boudet); near Kikara at base of inselberg (JH)

notes: tall bamboo (only native bamboo in the region)

ethnobotany: used for light roofing (sheds) and sold for skiff poles
Chloridoideae

1. Pappophoreae (Enneapogon)
Enneapogon (chiefly Saharan)

Enneapogon desvauxii

records: Kidal (Boudet)

habitat: rocks

Enneapogon lophotrichus

records: Adrar, Gao-Korogoussa

taxonomy: has been confused with E. desvauxii and E. schimperianus (Boudet)

Enneapogon scaber

records: Adrar (Boudet)

habitat: dry rocky areas, dry oueds


2. Cynodonteae (Chloris, Chrysochloa, Ctenium, Cynodon, Enteropogon, Leptothrium, Microchloa, Schoenefeldia, Tetrapogon, Tragus)
Chloris (more or less erect digitate racemes [spikes] emerging from tip of stem, see also Digitaria, Eleusine, Dinebra, Cynodon, Enteropogon)

long hairlike awns on florets: C. virgata (2 awns per floret), C. barbata (3 awns)

short awns: C. robusta, C. pilosa, C. gayana

Chloris barbata 50511 [can be confused with Enteropogon, probably absent from Mali]

records: none (Boudet)

notes: annual; culms 20-100 cm; few or no lateral branches; leaf-blade 4-40 cm x 0.2-0.3 cm; 5 20 spikes at tip of stem, 4-8 cm long, with hairlike protrusions, florets with three awns (versus 4-6 for Enneapogon]

Chloris gayana 50512

records: Gao, Timbuktu, Dire to Bandiagara, Bamako (Boudet)

habitat: wet depressions

notes: perennial, with stolons; culms 50-220 cm; leaf 25-50 cm x 0.3-0.9 cm; 7-20 thin spikes 4-15 cm long, emerging from tip of stem

ethnobotany: good fodder

Chloris lamproparia

records: Bore (Boudet)

habitat: wet sand, limy soils, iron pans (cuirasse latéritique)

notes: annual; leaf 4-16 cm x 0.3-0.5 cm; 2-4 spikes 4-11 cm long

Chloris pilosa 50513

records: Tikimsa, Djenne, Koulouba (Boudet); Anda, Segue (JH)

habitat: brousse tigrée, roadside, fallow

notes: annual; culms 50-100 cm; leaf 20-35 cm x 0.3-0.5 cm; 3-12 short, fairly thick spikes emerging from tip of stem, 2-10 cm long, turning purple then noir at maturity

Chloris prieurii (see Enteropogon prieurii)

Chloris robusta 50514

records: Bamako-Sotuba (Boudet); Boya near Gao (JH)

habitat: sandy oueds

notes: perennial; woody culms 1-3 m; many branches; leaf 15-40 cm x 0.3-0.8 cm; 10-28 thick spikes 10-15 cm long

Chloris virgata

records: Gao-Tabankort, Dire, lac Debo (Boudet)

habitat: sand

notes: annual; culms 50-100 cm; leaf 10-130 cm x 0.2-0.6 cm; 4-12 spikes 2-10 cm long
Ctenium

Ctenium newtonii var. newtonii 50515

records: Koulikoro, Bamako, Sanga (Boudet)

habitat: thin soil, gravel

notes: single long curling spike 7-20 cm long (cf. Tetrapogon cenchriformis)
Chrysochloa

Chrysochloa hindsii

records: Bore (Boudet)
Cynodon

Cynodon dactylon 50516 (couch grass or Bermuda grass, Fr chien-dent)

records: Mopti, Timbuktu, Bamako, lac Debo (Boudet); Ansongo, Hombori, Douentza on exit to Kubewel, Beni, Anda (JH)

notes: perennial, forms dense mats by spreading laterally and sending down roots from nodes that touch the ground; culms 8-40 cm long; leaf 1-12 cm x 0.2-0.4 cm; 4-6 digitate thin seed spikes 1.5-6 cm long, branching off a short erect stem (cf. Digitaria)

ethnobotany: widely used in house lawns in e.g. Bamako (cf. Dactyloctenium)
Enteropogon

Enteropogon prieurii 50517 (syn Chloris prieurii)

records: Adrar, Timbuktu, Niono, lac Debo, Nioro du Sahel, Sanga (Boudet); Dianwely, Beni, Anda, Bendiely, Sevare, Segue (JH)

habitat: depressions, sandy places

notes: 4-9 flexible spikes 4-12 cm long emerging from same point at top of stem (cf. Chloris)

Enteropogon rupestris

records: Koki, Tikimsa (Boudet)
Leptothrium

Leptothrium senegalense

records: Goundam, Timbuktu, Tessaguela (Boudet)

habitat: dry sand


Microchloa

Microchloa indica

records: Mopti, Niono, Bamako (Boudet)

habitat: thin soil, gravel


Schoenefeldia

Schoenefeldia gracilis 50518

records: Bandiagara to Mopti, Tabankort-Kidal, Nampala (Boudet); Menaka, Timbuktu, Hombori, Douentza, Kikara, Dianwely, Bendiely (JH)

habitat: sandy soil in plains (Boudet); most common grass in dry sandy plains from Timbuktu to Douentza (JH)

notes: annual; culms 15-90 cm; leave 1-3 mm wide; 2-4 (usually 2) long erect spikes emerging from tip of stem, not widely separated, 6-15 cm
Tetrapogon

Tetrapogon cenchriformis 50519

records: Ouan Foras, Gao (Boudet)

habitat: dry sandy, sandy-clayey, or gravelly soil

notes: short curling “cat-tail” spike 3-6 cm (cf. Ctenium newtonii)
Tragus [small grasses with leaves near base and a spike at the end of a long erect stem]

Tragus berteronianus 50520

records: Goundam, Gao, Tabankort-Kidal (Boudet); Dianwely (JH)

habitat: sand, also iron pans

Tragus racemosus 50521

records: Adrar, Tabankort-Kidal, Ansongo (Boudet); Hombori (JH)

habitat: sand
3. Eragrostidae (Acrachne, Coelachyrum, Dactyloctenium, Dinebra, Eleusine, Eragrostis, Leptochloa, Oropetium, Sporobolus, Tripogon)
Acrachne

Acrachne racemosa

records: Timbuktu

habitat: sand


Coelachyrum

Coelachyrum brevifolium

records: Sahara (Boudet)
Dactyloctenium

Dactyloctenium aegyptium 50522

records: Timbuktu, Niono, Sanga, Adrar, Koulikoro (Boudet); ubiquitous (JH)

notes: low grass, can form turfs; 4-5 thick digitate spikes, more or less horizontal (cf. Digitaria and Chloris), becoming brittle

ethnobotany: used for lawns in e.g. Bamako
Dinebra

Dinebra retroflexa var. retroflexa

records: Kogoni (Boudet); Hombori in sand (JH)

notes: semi-erect digitate spikes emerging at various points near end of stem (JH)


Eleusine

Eleusine indica

records: Kayes, Macina, Sanga, Bamako (Boudet); Bounou, Beni (in valley), Tanga (JH)

habitat: ruderal (roadside etc.)


Eragrostis (thin culms of several spp. used for brooms by Songhay)

Eragrostis atrovirens

records: Gao, Macina, San (Boudet)

habitat: moist or swampy zones

Eragrostis barteri

records: Bandiagara to Mopti, Macina, Gao, Diafarabe (Boudet)

habitat: oueds

notes: woody stems produce fascicles of flowering branches in dry season (Boudet)

Eragrostis cilianensis 50526 (“stink grass”) [get info and photo/JH 2010]

records: Timbuktu, Macina, San, Djenne, Nioro, Niono, lakes near Goundam, Segou (Boudet)

habitat: wet sand, clay

ethnobotany: good fodder

Eragrostis ciliaris 50527

records: Labbezanga, Sanga, Koulomba (Boudet); Anda, Beni (JH)

habitat: fallow fields, beside roads

notes: soft inflorescence, tiny florets easily detached by touching (JH)

Eragrostis domingensis

records: Kabara, Gourma Rharous, Niafunke (Boudet)

habitat: sand beside watercourses

Eragrostis gangetica 50528

records: Timbuktu, San, Bamako (Boudet); Boya (near Gao), Beni (JH)

habitat: moist depressions

notes: florets reddish, densely clustered

Eragrostis japonica (syn E. namaquensis [thus in Boudet])

records: Gourma Rharous, Segou, Banankoro (Boudet)

habitat: inundatable depressions



Eragrostis namaquensis (see E. japonica)

Eragrostis pilosa 50529

records: Kidal, Timbuktu, Sanga, Nioro du Sahel (Boudet); Boumbam, Dianwely, Segue (JH)

habitat: inundatable depressions

ethnbotany: light brooms

Eragrostis tremula 50531

records: Timbuktu, Niono, San, Segou (Boudet); Anda, Beni, Kubewel, Songho (JH)

habitat: sandy soil (Boudet); forms prairies in sandy plains (e.g. Dianwely to Anda) (JH)

notes: florets turning white, in broad panicles with each floret well-separated by a peduncle

flower (CIRAD): http://fleurs.cirad.fr/fleurs_d_afrique_tropicale/e/eragrostis_tremula

Eragrostis turgida 50532

records: Sanga, San, Bamako (Boudet)

habitat: moist zones
Leptochloa

Leptochloa caerulescens

records: Labbezanga, El Oualadji (Boudet)

habitat: near water

Leptochloa malabarica

records: Dire to Bandiagara (Boudet)

habitat: wet areas
Oropetium

Oropetium capense

records: Ansongo (Boudet)
Sporobolus

Sporobolus festivus 50533 (resembles S. microprotus)

records: Bamako, Niono, Tikimsa, Nioro du Sahel, Sanga (Boudet); Anda, Segue (JH)

habitat: rocky crevices, thin soils

notes: perennial (well-developed roots); culms erect 10-60 cm; thin linear leaf 2-7 cm x 0.1-0.2 cm often folded over; broad spreading panicle open 3-22 cm long, panicle branches hair-like (red) with lowest ones often pointing up, tiny florets 1-1.5 mm long (gold or purple)

reference: Adventices

Sporobolus helvolus 50534

records: Bandiagara, Labbezanga, Gourma Rharous, Kidal (Boudet); Anda (JH)

habitat: temporarily inundated areas

notes: annual (well-developed roots), stolons; vigorous culm 1 mm diameter; panicle linear to narrowly lanceolate 4-12 cm long s.t. contracted (spiciform), florets 1.4-2 mm long (reddish)

Sporobolus microprotus 50535 (resembles S. festivus)

records: Sanga, Ansongo, Bore, Douentza (Boudet); Kikara, Kubewel, Anda (JH)

habitat: roadsides, uncultivated areas

notes: annual (weakly-developed roots); culms 10-50 cm; leaf 2-14 cm x 0.3-0.7 cm; broad-spreading panicle 3-12 cm long of tiny florets 1-1.2 mm long (grey-green), panicle branches verticillate and horizontal at base

ethnobotany: not always named in Dogon languages even where present (small and inconspicuous species)

Sporobolus pyramidalis

records: Segou, Djenne, Sikasso

habitat: wet areas

notes: perennial (well-developed roots), in dense clumps; leaf to 50 cm x 0.3-1 cm, panicle 10-45 cm variably linear (spiciform) or narrowly pyrimidal

Sporobolus spicatus

records: Timbuktu, Gourma Rharous (Boudet)

habitat: alkaline or salty soil

notes: perennial, forms mats, stolons present; culms 10-100 cm; stiff leaf 2-30 cm x 0.1-0.4; inflorescence is a spiciform panicle (like a spike)

Sporobolus stolzii

records: Bamako, Boré

habitat: sand

notes: annual 10-90 cm high, narrowly elliptical panicle

Sporobolus subglobosus

records: Koro (Boudet)

habitat: brousse tachetée

notes: annual to 90 cm, leaf 4-15 cm x 0.2-0.6 cm, panicle lanceolate (many short branches), rather large florets 1.5-2 mm (reddish)
Tripogon

Tripogon minimus 50536

records: Niono, Koulikoro, Tin Zazi (Boudet); Kubewel, Tanga, Diangassagou, Bendiely, Segue (JH)

habitat: shallow soil near rocky outcrops

notes: tiny plant

native terms: may be grouped into a taxon with Digitaria ciliaris, based on a vague similarity of the inflorescences


Panicoideae

1. Arundinelleae (Loudetia)
Loudetia (several other spp. in far south)

Loudetia togoensis 50509

records: Niono, Bandiagara, Koulikoro, Nioro du Sahel (Boudet); Beni (JH)

habitat: iron pans

notes: very long awns
2. Paniceae (Acroceras, Alloteropsis, Anthephora, Brachiaria, Cenchrus, Digitaria, Echinochloa, Eriochloa, Panicum, Paspalidium, Paspalum, Pennisetum, Sacciolepis, Setaria, Urochloa)
Acroceras

Acroceras amplectens

records: Niono, Dogo, Tillabery to Gao (Boudet); Ayorou (Rep. of Niger), Djenne (JH)

habitat: swamps, shallow water


Alloteropsis paniculata

records: San, Djenne to Sofara (Boudet)

habitat: moist soil and swampy areas
Anthephora

Anthephora pubescens

records: Kidal (Boudet)

habitat: rocky


Brachiaria

inflorescence consists of several spikes with numerous florets in 1-2 rows

[cf. Echinochloa colona with 3-4 rows]

no of racemes (raceme length, inflorescence axis length)

2-8 xantholeuca (2-7 cm, 2-10 cm)

4-8 orthostachys (1-4 cm, 5-10 cm)

5-10 villosa (1-4 cm, 3-7 cm)

3-15 ramosa (1-8 cm, 3-10 cm)

7-15 deflexa (2-10 cm, 6-15 cm)

5-20 mutica (2-10 cm, 7-20 cm)

5-30 lata (2-8 cm, 1-12 cm)

length of culms in cm

10-50 villosa

20-60 xantholeuca

20-60 orthostachys (nodes pubescent)

10-70 ramosa

15-70 deflexa (weak)

25-125 mutica

30-150 lata (robust)

length of leaf blade in cm

1-7 villosa

3-8 orthostachys

3-15 xantholeuca

2-25 ramosa

4-25 deflexa

5-20 lata (widest)

6-30 mutica

width of leaf blade in cm

widest: 1-2.5 lata

0.4-2.2 deflexa

medium: 0.3-1.5 mutica

0.4-1.4 ramosa

narrow: 0.4-1 xantholeuca

0.2-0.7 orthostachys

0.2-0.6 villosa

florets solitary (not in pairs): xantholeuca, sometimes ramosa

Brachiaria deflexa

records: Sanga, Niono, Bore (Boudet)

habitat: moist sandy soil, s.t. in shade

notes: annual; weak culms 15-70 cm; leaf blade and often sheath finely pubescent, short hairs on margins of sheath, leaf margin scabrous, short membranous ligule with hairs; leaf 4-25 cm x 0.4-2.2 cm; 7-15 racemes 2-10 cm long on a central axis 6-15 cm long; elliptic florets 2.5-3.5 mm long, spreading in pairs, florets (or pairs) well-spaced from each other, outer florets on pedicels longer than the floret; uppermost leaf may envelope base of inflorescence

taxonomy: close to (and perhaps a geographic variant of) B. ramosa (Poilecot, Niger)

ethnobotany: cultivated in part of Guinea-Conakry, has spread elsewhere as a weed

Brachiaria lata 50542

records: Djenne, Bore, Sanga, Gao, Koulouba, Nioro du Sahel (Boudet); Tupere, Anda, Perge, Segue (JH)

habitat: moist areas e.g. beside ponds

notes: annual; long robust culms 30-150 cm; broad leaf 5-20 cm x 1-2.5 cm wide; 5-30 racemes 2-8 cm long, on a central axis 1-12 cm; floret packing crowded, irregular; oblong florets 2.5-3.5 mm long, by pairs with one of pair slightly pedicellate

reference: image in Adventices

Brachiaria mutica 50543

records: Niger R., e.g. Timbuktu, Gao (JH)

habitat: aquatic, important weed of ricefields (JH)

notes: perennial; culms rambling 25-125 cm long, rooting from lower nodes; leaf 6-30 cm x 0.3-1.5 cm; 5-20 racemes 2-10 cm long on central axis 7-20 cm long; floret packing irregular; elliptic florets 2.5-3.5 mm long, in pairs

Brachiaria orthostachys

records: Gourma Rharous, Gossi (Boudet)

habitat: dunes

notes: annual; culms 20-60 cm, nodes pubescent; short leaf 3-8 cm x 0.2-0.7 cm, densely hairy on both sides; 4-8 racemes 1-4 cm long, on a central axis 5-10 cm

Brachiaria ramosa

records: Timbuktu, Bore, Niono, Macina, Gao, Ouan Foras (Boudet)

habitat: psammophile (in sun) in wet zones

notes: annual, culms 10-70 cm; short membranous ligule with hairs; wide leaf 2-25 cm x 0.4-1.4 cm; 3-15 racemes 1-8 cm long on central axis 3-10 cm long; floret packing irregular; elliptic florets 2.5-3.5 mm long, in pairs

Brachiaria villosa 50697

records: Macina, Niono, Bamako (Boudet); Segue (JH)

habitat: sand, often in fields

notes: annual; culms decumbent 10-50 cm; leaf 1-7 cm x 0.2-0.6 cm; leaf margin cartilaginous and spiny; 5-10 racemes 1-4 cm long on central axis 3-7 cm; floret packing irregular; florets solitary or in pairs; elliptic florets 2-2.7 mm sometimes with hairs extending 0-0.5 mm beyond apex of upper glume

Brachiaria xantholeuca 50544

records: Gao, Tikimsa, Gossi, Douentza (Boudet); Beni (JH)

habitat: moist sandy areas

notes: annual; culms 20-60 cm; slender leaf 3-15 cm x 0.4-1 cm; velvety pubescence on leaves and sheathes; leaf margins with hairs esp. at base; ligule is a fringe of hairs; 2 8 racemes 2-7 cm long on a central axis 2-10 cm long; elliptical florets 2.7-4 mm long, solitary and sessile in 2 rows, acuminate
Cenchrus

Cenchrus biflorus 50546 (burrgrass, Fr. cram-cram)

records: Timbuktu, Gao, Sanga, Bamako (Boudet); Timbuktu, Hombori, Tupere, Douentza, Bendiely, Segue (JH)

habitat: sandy soil (Boudet); extensive prairies in the Gourma (JH)

notes: classic burrgrass, burrs stick to clothing (see also Pupalia lappacea, Amaranthaceae); burrs green when fresh, turning dark brown

ethnobotany: important fodder grass for livestoc at certain growth stages (i.e. when not prevented by growth of burrs)

Cenchrus ciliaris 50547 (“buffel grass”)

records: Bamba, Tabankort to Kidal, Timbuktu (Boudet)

habitat: variable soil types

notes: perennial, rhizomatous; dense inflorescence 2-2.6 cm wide, feathery silks inside burrs

Cenchrus prieurii 50548

records: Timbuktu, Gao, Kidal (Boudet); Beni, Nando (JH)

habitat: sand

notes: annual, broad inflorescence 2-4 cm wide; no feathery silks inside burrs


Digitaria (digitate spikes, see also Chloris, Eleusine, Dinebra, Cynodon)

Digitaria acuminatissima

records: lac Faguibine, San, Gao, Bandiagara to Mopti, Djenne (Boudet)

habitat: beside watercourses

Digitaria barbinodis

records: Bourem, Gao, Kabara (Boudet)

habitat: rice fields, bourgou

Digitaria ciliaris var. ciliaris 50549 [very similar to D. horizontalis]

records: Macina, Timbuktu, Dioura (Boudet); ubiquitous (JH)

habitat: weed of millet fields (JH)

notes: 5-12 racemes subdigitate (emerge at same point or close together); racemes thin, 6-22 cm, rigid; racemes sometimes have white hairs; common axis up to 4 cm long; hairs along glumes

Digitaria debilis

records: Kabara, Djenne, Kara (Boudet)

habitat: wet sand, often beside watercourses

Digitaria exilis (cultivated fonio grain)

records: formerly widely cultivated in Dogon country, now absent from northern Dogon country and cultivated only here and there in central and southern Dogon country (small fields seen at Songho, Bendiely, and Diangassagou) (JH)

cultivation: since fonio fields are level (lightly turned over and not furrowed) and since the young plants look like ordinary wild grass, a common problem is that others do not recognize fonio fields and may let donkeys and other animals graze it; harvested around early October by slashing stems with a sickle; seeds are later dislodged by threshing large piles of the stems

Digitaria gayana

records: In Tikinissa, Sanga, Segou (Boudet)

habitat: sand, esp. in fields, also clayey-limey soil

Digitaria horizontalis 50551 [very similar to D. ciliaris]

records: Macina, Timbuktu, Niono, Gao, Tin Ahara, Douentza (Boudet)

habitat: sand, gravely sand

notes: often has hairs on racemes; 4-15 racemes emerge up and down the axis; common axis 2-8 cm long; racemes thin, 3-16 cm, not rigid; noticeable hairs coming off racemes, but virtually no hairs on glume

Digitaria leptorhachis

recorrds: Bamako, Segou, Gourma Rharous

habitat: wet areas

Digitaria longiflora

records: Gourma-Rharous, Sanga

habitat: roadside, old fields


Echinochloa

Echinochloa colona 50553 [can be confused with Brachiaria spp., observe ligules and leaf width]

records: Djenne, Gao, Bamako, Niono, Bandiagara (Boudet); Gao, Boumbam, Boro (JH)

habitat: lightly inundated areas e.g. at pond edges (cf. Brachiaria lata)

notes: much shorter than other Echinochloa sp., 20-80 cm high; no ligules (where leaf emerges from sheath); leaf 6-30 cm x 0.4-0.8 cm wide; florets in 3-4 rows

native term: may be combined with Brachiara lata, B. villosa (similar habitat and appearance)



Echinochloa geminata (see Paspalidium geminatum)

Echinochloa lelievrei (see E. stagnina)

Echinochloa pyramidalis 50554

records: Niger R. (like E. stagnina); Kubewel-Adia (JH)

habitat: riverbanks, marshes (not usually in deep water)

notes: very tall, 2-3m; 20 or more racemes up to 8 cm long; florets awnless; substantial rhizome

Echinochloa stagnina 50555 (bourgou grass) (syn E. lelievrei [FWTA2])

records: very common along Niger R. e.g. Timbuktu, lac Debo, Walo (JH)

habitat: aquatic, grows in fairly deep water e.g. in Niger River, may form floating prairies (e.g. in lac Debo)

notes: tall, 2m; 5-15 racemes up to 6 cm long; florets with distinct awns; rhizomes may float

ethnobotany: culms sold as fodder; riverine Songhay make a syrup from it using special filtering baskets


Eriochloa

Eriochloa fatmensis

records: Bore, Niono (Boudet)

habitat: sandy depressions with water and shade


Panicum [close to Brachiaria]

inflorescence is a much-branching panicle

florets

widely gaping from early stages: anabaptistum, fluviicola, walense



gaping at maturity: nigerense

acute (not gaping): subalbidum, laetum, repens, turgidum

tall perennials with short rhizomes: turgidum (to 1.4m, forms clumps, far north), anabaptistum (to 1.5m, narrow leaf only up to 0.6 cm wide), subalbidum (to 2m, florets not gaping), fluviicola (to 2.3m, florets gaping)
Panicum anabaptistum 50557

records: Djenne, San, Dogo, Niono, Macina, Bamako (Boudet); Hombori (JH)

habitat: inundated or recently dried areas, usually sandy

notes: perennial to 1.5 m; culms hard; narrow leaf to 25-30 cm x 0.4-0.6 cm; base of panicle enclosed by the sheath of the last leaf; inflorescense with relatively few branches (not verticillate); florets gaping

Panicum fluviicola 50558 (similar to P. subalbidum)

records: Macina, Mopto to Djenne, Bougoun (Boudet); Kikara (JH)

habitat: edge of watercourses, inundated plains

notes: tall perennial to 2.3 m; short rhizome; leaf 25-50 cm x 0.3-1.2 cm; nodes and florets often purplish; inflorescence with many branches, more or less verticillate; small florets gaping (with two tips)

Panicum laetum 50559 ("wild fonio)"

records: Niono, Gao, Ouan Foras, Douentza-Hombori, Koulikoro (Boudet); Gao, Hombori, Boni, Dianwely, Beni, Bendiely (JH)

habitat: moist soils, can form prairies

notes: short, compact annual 17-70 cm high; leaf 4-24 cm x 0.5-1 cm; abundant large rounded florets 2.5-3 mm long (not gaping), green to yellow

ethnobotany: formerly an important crisis food, still occasionally harvested; abundant grains can be collected by swishing a special basket through the plants (Tupere, Hombori), or by placing a basket underneath and beating the plants with sticks

Panicum nigerense

records: Macina, Koloni (Boudet)

habitat: dry sandy soil

notes: annual 60-150 cm; leaf 25-50 cm x 0.8 cm; large panicles with filiform branches; large florets to 6 mm long, acuminate (but gaping when ripe), yellow to red-brown

Panicum repens (“torpedo grass”)

records: Goundam, Dire, Niono, Bamako-Sotuba (Boudet)

habitat: swamps and inundatable grassland

notes: perennial 30-100 cm with long rhizome and stolons, spreads along ground; florets acute (not gaping); inferior glume very short (up to 1/3 length of floret)

Panicum subalbidum 50560 (similar to P. fluviicola)

records: Ansongo, Macina, Bandiagara to Mopti, Niono, Bamako (Boudet); Bamba (on Niger R.), Douentza, Beni, Anda, Boui, Boro (JH)

habitat: swamps, in shallow water during flood season

notes: perennial to 2 m; short rhizome; culms thick and spongy; nodes blackish, leaf 7-40 cm x 0.3-1.5 cm; florets usually acuminate (not gaping), pale green or tinted purple; inferior glume very short (up to 1/3 length of floret), not sharply pointed

Panicum turgidum 50561

records: Timbuktu, Sompi (Boudet); Gao area (JH)

habitat: dry sandy soil, sandy-rocky river beds

notes: perennial in large tufts to 140 cm high, culms woody; leaf 10-20 cm x 0.4-0.7 cm; florets acuminate

Panicum walense

records: Niono, Macina, Bamako

habitat: thin soils

notes: erect annual to 18-70 cm; narrow leaf 3-20 cm x 02-0.6 cm; tiny florets gaping, often tinted purple; inferior glume about ¾ as long as floret

Paspalidium

Paspalidium geminatum 50562 (syn Echinochloa geminata)

records: Bourem, Gao (Boudet); Timbuktu to Gao in rice fields; Kikara in small but deep pool at spring (JH)

habitat: aquatic, common weed of rice fields

Paspalum


Paspalum scrobiculatum 50563 (also spelled scrobiculare)

records: Mopti, Labbezanga, Diafarabe, Niono, Macina (Boudet); Walo, Beni, Bendiely (JH)

habitat: moist areas, s.t. in shade

reference: Adventices


Pennisetum

cultivated

Pennisetum glaucum 50564 (syn P. americanum)

[=cultivated pearl millet, sometimes also stray outside of fields]

cultivars: the main distinction is between "early millet" which is harvested early (plant is smaller and its grain spike rather thin), and the main variety

growth stages: notable stages in the development of the grain head are the appearance of a reddish fuzz (i.e. the flowers), and the development of a milky liquid in the unripe grains

pests: a disease whose signature is red blotches on stems and leaves; grubs include weevil larvae that attack the roots of young plants, the millet stem borer (Coniesta ignefusalis, a pyralid butterfly larva), and the millet head-miner (Heliocheilus albipunctella, a noctuid butterfly larva); beetles (cetonid beetles Pachnoda cordata and P. interrupta, meloid beetles such as Psalydolytta fusca and P. vestita), grasshoppers (e.g. Kraussaria angulifera, Oedaleus senegalensis, Hieroglyphis daganensis); among birds, especially the large migratory flocks of Quelea quelea (black-faced dioch) and Passer luteus (golden sparrow) that come before harvest time; millet grains are very hard when harvested and the grain spikes can be stored in granaries for long periods

ethnobotany:

grains: the staple grain in most Dogon and montane Songhay villages, since it requires less rainfall than other grain crops; half-ripe grain spikes can be lightly roasted and eaten around September; harvested grain spikes are stored in granaries, often divided into lower-quality spikes to be consumed in the months after the harvest, and higher-quality spikes for later consumption or for long-term storage; grains are used in staple foods, notably millet cakes (local French , often served with baobab-leaf sauce) and several varieties of cream of millet (crème de mil); millet-flour fritters give some competition to wheat-flour fritters in large towns

stems: the robust culms are used for heavy thatching (e.g. roofs of shelters) and as fodder for livestock; the culms are piled up and burned beside the field, and the ashes are collected and made into soda ash (potasse)

cultivation: in large fields, often side by side with smaller fields of sorghum (Sorghum bicolor) and peanut; millet can be interspersed with roselle (Hibiscus sabdariffa) and/or cow-pea (Vigna unguiculata); harvested around late October by cutting stems with a quick stroke just below the grain spike using a hand-knife attached to the palm; if the grain spike is too high to reach, the stem is bent over, or in some areas (Togo Kan) the stems are knocked down first and the grain spikes are cut off later; nowadays harvested grain spikes are frequently jammed into large baskets and carried on the head directly to the village, or tied into bundles (Fr. fagots) and brought by cart; in large and/or distant fields, grain spikes are temporarily piled in very large heaps, or inside stone enclosures, and transported some time later to the village

reference on genetic basis for cultivated/weedy distinction: Miura & Terauchi (2005) Molecular Ecology 14: 1251-1261

wild

Pennisetum hordeoides

records: Macina, south (Boudet)

habitat: disturbed soils, gravel, often in shade

notes: to 90-150 cm high; leaf 3-25 cm long 2-15 mm wide, densely hairy; inflorescence with spikes 3-18 cm x 4-8 mm plus silky hairs to 5-8 mm long

Pennisetum pedicellatum 50565

records:

Hombori, Tupere, Dianwely, Bounou, Bendiely, Segue (JH)

-- subsp. pedicellatum: Segou, Sanga, Ouan Foras, Gao (Boudet)

-- subsp. unispiculum: Koulikoro, Koulouba (Boudet)

habitat: disturbed soil

Pennisetum polystachion subsp. polystachion 50566

records: Diafarabe, Niono, Bamako (Boudet); Boui, Bendiely, Nando (JH)

habitat: disturbed soil (Poilecot: humid soil beside ponds, in shade)

notes: to 1-2 m high; leaf 10-40 cm long 3-16 mm wide, glabrous or hairy; inflorescence yellow 3-25 cm x 10 mm plus silky hairs (feathery at base) to 15-25 mm long

Pennisetum purpureum (“elephant grass”)

records: Bamako, Oualia

habitat: edge of watercourse or forest, also cultivated (elephant grass, Napier grass)

Pennisetum violaceum

records: Gao, In Tillit, Kidal, Gossi, Nioro du Sahel (Boudet)

habitat: fallow fields, roadside (Poilecot: weed in sandy zones)

notes: plant is highly variable; to 30-120 cm high; leaf 4-12 cm x 6-10 mm; inflorescence in spike 3-8 cm x 6-10 mm often tinted violet, with silky hairs to 8 mm, feathery at base


Sacciolepis

Sacciolepis africana

records: Gao, Mopti to Sofara, south (Boudet); Ansongo, Gao (JH)

habitat: rice fields (Boudet); shallow water at edge of river (JH)

notes: grains tightly attached to long spike, more or less erect, bright green

Sacciolepis chevalieri

records: Niger Delta, Bamako (Boudet)

habitat: in shade near springs

Sacciolepis ciliocincta

records: Sanzana (Boudet)

habitat: temporary ponds on rocks
Setaria

Setaria barbata

records: Segou, Niono (Boudet)

habitat: well-watered soil, ruderal

Setaria pumila 50567

records: Gossi, Niono, Sanga, Segou, Bamako (Boudet); Tupere, Walo, Segue, Bendiely, Diangassagou (JH)

habitat: wet sand

notes: terminal spiciform inflorescence 1.5-12 cm, florets pale or tinted reddish

Setaria sphacelata var. sphacelata [also other varieties in southern Mali]

records: Bamako, San, Dogo (Boudet)

habitat: various humid or inundated zones

Setaria verticillata 50568

records: Gao, Nioro du Sahel (Boudet); Anda (JH)

habitat: grassy, moist, shady areas, anthropic

notes: terminal spiciform inflorescence 3-10 cm long, florets pale green; silky hairs on florets have tiny downward-facing hooks that catch
Urochloa

Urochloa trichopus

records: Gao, Gossi, Tin Ahara (Boudet)

habitat: sandy-clayey depressions


3. Andropogoneae

3a. subtribe Andropogoninae (Andropogon, Cymbopogon, Dicanthium, Diheteropogon, Hackelochloa, Hemarthria, Hyparrhenia, Hyperthelia, Imperata, Parahyparrhenia, Saccharum, Schizachyrium, Sehima, Sorghum, Vetiveria)
Andropogon

Andropogon africanus

records: Diafarabe, Macina, Bamako (Boudet)

habitat: inundatable areas

Andropogon canaliculatus

records: Macina, San, Diafarabe, south (Boudet)

habitat: inundatable areas

notes: culms 25 cm to 2 m tall; leaf 10-40 cm x 0.1-0.5 cm

Andropogon fastigiatus 50485

records: Bore, Niono, Gossi, south (Boudet)

habitat: gravely soil, s.t. swamps on slabs

notes: culms 15 cm to 2 m tall; leaf 5-30 cm x 0.1-0.4 cms

Andropogon gayanus 50486

key to varieties (< Poilecot)

hairs on just one side of pedicel (base of upper spikelet)

upper spikelet glabrous, height 100-350 cm, beside ponds and watercourses

var. gayanus

upper spikelet woolly or pubescent, height 120-180 cm, leaf linear, between dunes

var. tridentatus

hairs on both sides of pedicel (base of upper spikelet)

upper spikelet glabrous, plant to 300 cm, leaf variable

var. polycladus 50488

upper spikelet woolly, plant often more than 300 cm, leaf long (to 100 cm) and broad (to 3 cm), leaf very hairy behind the ligule, inflorescence may occupy upper third of plant

var. bisquamulatus 50487

records: the common tall grass on inselbergs and in other rocky areas in Dogon and montane Songhay country, mainly var bisquamulatus (JH)

var. gayanus: Timbuktu, Macina (Boudet)

var. tridentatus: Kidal, Bamako (Boudet)

var. polycladus 50488: Gao, Macina, Segou, Nioro du Sahel, Timbuktu (Boudet)

var. bisquamulatus 50487: Gao, Koulouba (Boudet); appears to be the dominant variety in Dogon country, but retreating from the plains due to desertification (JH)

ethnobotany (var. bisquamulatus): culms widely used for thatching (more robust than those of Vetiveria nigritana, but thinner than those of millet

Andropogon pseudapricus

records: Bandiagara, Segou, Bamako

habitat: thin soils, gravelly soil, often on stone shelfs

notes: culms 50-150 cm; leaf 8-40 cm x 0.1-0.5 cm

Cymbopogon [aromatic lemon-grasses; cottony seed spikes rise far above leaves on erect culm]

Cymbopogon giganteus 50489

records: Hombori, Walo, Anda, Dianwely, Boni, Perge, abundant beside seasonal ponds on highway near Boussouma (JH)

var. giganteus: Bamako, Ansongo, Nioro du Sahel, Segou, Hombori-Gossi (Boudet)

var. inermis: Macina (Boudet)

habitat: rocky or gravely plateaus

notes: culms 1-3 m; broad leaf 15-60 cm x 0.8-3 cm, dark green

ethnobotany: culms (stems) used in thatch (shelter coverings); medicinal

Cymbopogon schoenanthus 50490

records: Hombori, Tupere (JH)

subsp. schoenanthus: Ansongo (Boudet)

subsp. proximus: Douentza-Hombori, Ansongo, Gao (Boudet)

habitat: sand, or sand-strewn areas

notes: culms 30-120 cm; filiform to linear leaf 10-35 cm x 0.1-0.4 cm

ethnobotany: medicinal
Dicanthium (Saharan spp.)

Dicanthium annulatum var. annulatum

records: Kidal (Boudet)

habitat: rocky or clayey areas

Dicanthium foveolatum

records: Adrar (Boudet)

habitat: rocky or gravely zones
Diheteropogon

Diheteropogon hagerupii 50491

records: Ansongo, Sanga, Bandiagara to Mopti, Macina, Niono, Bamako (Boudet); Walo (beside path up to village), Bendiely, road to Segue (JH)

habitat: heavy sands, or sandy-clayey gravel

notes: resembles Hyperthelia dissoluta (but ligules hairless); culms yellow (when leaf sheathes removed); long bent awns with "kneecap" at bend
Hackelochloa

Hackelochloa granularis

records: Bamako, Labbezanga (Boudet)

habitat: often in shade; sandy, clayey-sandy, or gravely soil


Hemarthria

Hemarthria altissima

records: north of Mopti, lac Tenda (Boudet)

habitat: shallow waters and muddy areas beside watercourses and lakes (Boudet)


Hyparrhenia

Hyparrhenia dissoluta (see Hyperthelia dissoluta)

Hyparrhenia rufa

records: Macina, south (Boudet)

habitat: moist areas in savanna, elsewhere in stunted form


Hyperthelia

Hyperthelia dissoluta (syn Hyparrhenia dissoluta)

records: Gourma Rharous, Nioro du Sahel, Macina, Bamako (Boudet)

habitat: moist areas in savanna

notes: long awns, bent multiply near base; ligules usually with conspicuous hairs (unlike Diheteropogon hagerupii)
Imperata

Imperata cylindrica

records: Bamako and south (Boudet)

habitat: cultivated areas


Parahyparrhenia

Parahyparrhenia annua

records: Nioro du Sahel, south (Boudet)

habitat: ponds on rock pans

note: highly variable plant
Saccharum

Saccharum officinarum 50495 [sugar cane, cultivated]

ethnobotany: sold in markets for sucking (see also Sorghum bicolor, one variety of which has similar sweet stems)
Schizachyrium

Schizachyrium brevifolium

records: Niono, south (Boudet)

habitat: wet areas

Schizachyrium exile 50496

records: Niono, Ansongo, Tin Zazi, Bamako (Boudet); Kikara, near Anda, Diangassagou (JH)

habitat: dry or poor soil

notes: entire plant turns blood red when dry (as for S. sanguineum)

taxonomy: close to S. sanguineum

Schizachyrium sanguineum

records: Nioro du Sahel, Segou (Boudet)

habitat: wide range from thin stony soil to beside water


Sehima

Sehima ischaemoides

records: Gao-Tabankort, Sokolo (Boudet)

habitat: brousse tigrée


Sorghastrum

Sorghastrum stipoides

records: Diafarabe, Bamako, Macina, San, Dogo (Boudet)

habitat: inundated areas


Sorghum

cultivated

Sorghum bicolor 50498 [sorghum, Fr sorgho or petit mil]

cultivars: several varieties that tolerate different growing conditions; main distinction is between sweet sorghum 50498 (stems sucked like sugar cane) and regular sorghum; further distinctions by color of grains (red to white to dark), density of grain spikes, and erect or decumbant position of grain spike at maturity

ethnobotany: important grain crop in northern Dogon country, second to millet

cultivation: often side by side with millet (Pennisetum glaucum), though sorghum needs more moisture and is planted in lower sections of fields; generally harvested late after millet

wild

Sorghum aethiopicum

records: Kidal (Boudet)

habitat: brousse tigrée

Sorghum arundinaceum 50497

records: Gao, Gossi, Segou (Boudet); Beni, Nando, this is probably the "wild sorghum" throughout Dogon country (JH)

habitat: clayey depressions (Boudet); weed in moist areas beside fields (JH)

notes: tall grass, culms 30 cm to 4 m; leaf 5-75 cm x 0.5-7 cm

Sorghum purpureo-sericeum

records: Macina (Boudet)

habitat: inundatable area

Sorghum virgatum

records: Tilemsi, Dire, Gao, Sanga (Boudet)

notes: annual, culms 50-100 cm


Vetiveria

Vetiveria fulvibarbis

records: San, Macina, Koulikoro (Boudet)

habitat: inundated areas

Vetiveria nigritana 50550

records: Mopti, Macina, Nioro du Sahel, Sanga, Gao (Boudet); fairly common in moist pond margins in northern Dogon country, e.g. Walo, Bamba (JH)

habitat: beside water courses, inundated areas

notes: clumpy at base, stems to 2m if undisturbed but culms usually cut off near base

ethnobotany: culms (stems) woven into light matting; culms are thinner and less robust than those of Andropogon gayanus
3b. subtribe Rottboelliinae (Chasmopodium, Elionurus, Lasiurus, Rhytachne, Rottboellia, Vossia)
Chasmopodium (close to Rottboellia)

Chasmopodium caudatum

records: Bandiagara to Mopti, Koulouba (Boudet)

habitat: fields, dry forest

notes: tall grass, culms 2-4 m
Elionurus

Elionurus elegans 50492

records: Niono, Bore, Sanga, Macina, Nioro du Sahel, Bougouni (Boudet); Bounou village east of Mopti in stony ground at schoolhouse (JH)

habitat: rocky shelfs, gravel, rocky debris

notes: central spike is silvery-silky; resembles Lasiurus scindicus
Lasiurus

Lasiurus scindicus

records: Tessalit (Boudet); mostly north of Timbuktu-Gao line

habitat: various, including stony oueds, regg, oasis

notes: resembles Elionurus elegans
Rhytachne

Rhytachne triaristata

records: Niono, Gossi, Koulouba (Boudet)

habitat: wet areas on edges of watercourses, thin soils


Rottboellia

Rottboellia cochinchinensis 50484

records: Macina, Gao, Koulouba (Boudet); Adia village east of Douentza (JH)

notes: tall grass, culms 30 cm to 3 m; leaf 15-45 cm x 0.5-2 cm, surface scaberulous (has small rough bulges)


Vossia

Vossia cuspidata 50501

records: Gao, Timbuktu (Boudet); Niger R. near Timbuktu (JH)

habitat: in water near banks of watercourses and lakes


4. Maydeae (Zea)
Zea

Zea mays [cultivated maize]

ethnobotany: cultivated here and there in central and southern Dogon country, absent farther north

5. Pooideae

Triticeae (Triticum)
Triticum

Triticum aestivum 50569 [cultivated wheat]

records: Bamako (Boudet); not cultivated in Dogon and Songhay country [JH]

ethnobotany: wheat flour used for bread and fritters in large towns




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