ELIONEURUS Humb. & Bonpl. Balsamscale
Plants hermaphroditic, caespitose or rhizomatous, annual or perennial (our species). Culms erect or ascending; internodes solid,
glabrous or pubescent, terete; nodes glabrous. Leaves basal and cauline (shoots aromatic or not aromatic), not distinctly
distichous; sheaths terete, margins open; auricles absent; ligules a ciliate membrane or a line of hairs; blades flat or folded
or involute, linear (narrow), lax, apex acuminate. Spicate racemes terminal and axillary (a few inflorescences per culm),
sheaths subtending inflorescence not inflated or spathe-like, rachis hairy; pedicels not longtudinally grooved, hairy, semiterete.
Spikelets paired at inflorescence nodes (at apex ternate), similar in size and shape, disarticulation below the
glumes, dorsiventrally compressed; sessile (or short pediceled) spikelets fertile, pedicellate (long pediceled) spikelets
staminate. Pedicellate spikelets well developed, awnless. Sessile spikelets perfect; first glumes 2-keeled,
not with a gland-like depressions or pits; abaxial surface convex or flat, rough, indurate, scabrous to
hairy, awnless; second glumes length equal to first glumes, longer than florets; lower lemmas floret sterile,
hyaline, entire, awnless; paleas absent; upper floret lemmas fertile hyaline (0-veined), entire (acute),
awnless; paleas present or absent, hyaline and reduced when present. Stamens 3; anthers brown or yellow or purple.
Caryopses dorvsiventrally compressed. Base chromosome number x=10.
A genus of about 15 species that are adapted to tropical and subtropical regions of the world. Many of the
taxa are important livestock forages of grasslands and savannahs.