Graphephorum melicoides (Michx.) Desv.

graphephorum

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New England Distribution

Adapted from BONAP data

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North America Distribution

Adapted from BONAP data

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Facts About

Graphephorum is a rare grass from ice-scoured river shores, river shore rock ledges, and cliffs, usually on calcarious rock or soils. It is currently or historically known from Maine, New Hampshire and Vermont.

Habitat

Cliffs, balds, or ledges, ridges or ledges, shores of rivers or lakes

Characteristics

Habitat
terrestrial
New England state
  • Maine
  • New Hampshire
  • Vermont
Leaf blade width
2–9 mm
Inflorescence branches
the flowers are attached to branches rather than to the main axis of the inflorescence
Spikelet length
5–9 mm
Glume relative length
  • both glumes are as long or longer than all of the florets
  • neither glume is quite as long as all of the florets
Awn on glume
the glume has no awn
One or more florets
there is more than one floret per spikelet
Lemma awn length
0–2 mm
Leaf sheath hair type
  • there are hairs on the surface of the leaf sheath, but the hairs do not have blisters at their bases
  • there are no hairs on the surface of the leaf sheath
Leaf ligule length
1.5–3.5 mm
Anther length
0.6–0.8 mm
Show All Characteristics
  • Flowers
    Anther length
    0.6–0.8 mm
    Anther number
    Up to 3
    Awn on glume
    the glume has no awn
    Floret lower bract texture
    the lemma is thin and flexible
    Glume relative length
    • both glumes are as long or longer than all of the florets
    • neither glume is quite as long as all of the florets
    Inflorescence arrangement
    the spikelets are uniform
    Inflorescence axis orientation
    • the inflorescence axis bends downwards or hangs
    • the inflorescence axis is arched or curved outward
    Inflorescence branches
    the flowers are attached to branches rather than to the main axis of the inflorescence
    Inflorescence length
    80–200 mm
    Inflorescence type (general)
    the spikelets are borne on stalks or on branches
    Inflorescence type (specific)
    the inflorescence is branched, and the branches do NOT both grow from the same side of the plant AND look like spikes
    Inforescence position
    the spikelets are mainly carried at the end of the stem
    Lemma awn base
    the awn is attached at the upper half of the lemma
    Lemma awn length
    0–2 mm
    Lemma awn number
    • the lemma has no awn
    • the lemma has one awn on it
    Lemma base hair length
    1.5–2 mm
    Lemma base hairs
    the lemma has hairs at the base
    Lemma cross-section
    the lemma is V-shaped if you cut across the midpoint
    Lemma surface
    the surface of the lemma is relatively smooth (not counting any longitudinal veins or hairs)
    Lemma tip
    the lemma tip is a simple point, with or without an awn (long narrow extension ending in a point)
    Lemma vein number
    5
    One or more florets
    there is more than one floret per spikelet
    Spikelet axis tip
    there is an extension of the spikelet axis beyond the tip of the spikelet
    Spikelet length
    5–9 mm
    Spikelets spiny
    the spikelets do not appear spiny
    Upper glume shape
    the upper glume is widest at or below the middle
  • Leaves
    Leaf auricles
    the leaves do not have auricles
    Leaf blade width
    2–9 mm
    Leaf ligule length
    1.5–3.5 mm
    Leaf ligule type
    the leaf ligule is in the form of a membrane
    Leaf sheath closed around stem
    the margins of the leaf sheath are overlapping and not fused together except in the basal half (or less)
    Leaf sheath hair type
    • there are hairs on the surface of the leaf sheath, but the hairs do not have blisters at their bases
    • there are no hairs on the surface of the leaf sheath
    Leaf sheath hairs
    • there are hairs on the surface of the leaf sheath
    • there are no hairs on the surface of the leaf sheath
  • Place
    Habitat
    terrestrial
    New England state
    • Maine
    • New Hampshire
    • Vermont
    Specific habitat
    • cliffs, balds, or ledges
    • ridges or ledges
    • shores of rivers or lakes
  • Stem, shoot, branch
    Stem spacing
    the stems grow close together in compact clusters or tufts

Wetland Status

Usually occurs in wetlands, but occasionally in non-wetlands. (Wetland indicator code: FACW)

New England Distribution and Conservation Status

Distribution

Connecticut
absent
Maine
present
Massachusetts
absent
New Hampshire
present
Rhode Island
absent
Vermont
present

Conservation Status

Exact status definitions can vary from state to state. For details, please check with your state.

New Hampshire
historical (S-rank: SH), endangered (code: E)
Vermont
historical (S-rank: SH)

Native to North America?

Yes

Sometimes Confused With

Deschampsia anadyrensis:
awn attached above the middle of the lemma and lemma apex bifid (vs. G. melicoides, with the awn attached below the middle of the lemma, and lemma apex entire to bifid).
Trisetum flavescens:
lemmas with awns 3–9 mm long, the awns conspicuously surpassing the apex of the lemma, and callus of lemma pubescent with hairs up to 1 mm long (vs. G. melicoides, with lemmas unawned or rarely with rudimentary awns shorter than 2 mm, and callus of lemma pubescent with hairs 1.5–2 mm long).

Synonyms

  • Aira melicoides Michx.
  • Trisetum melicoides (Michx.) Vasey ex Scribn.
  • Trisetum melicoides (Michx.) Vasey ex Scribn. var. majus (Gray) A.S. Hitchc.

Family

Poaceae

Genus

Graphephorum

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Information from Dichotomous Key of Flora Novae Angliae

1.  Graphephorum melicoides (Michx.) Desv. NC

graphephorum. Aira melicoides Michx.; Trisetum melicoides (Michx.) Vasey ex Scribn.; 
 T. melicoides (Michx.) Vasey ex Scribn. var. majus (Gray) A.S. Hitchc. • ME, NH, VT. Ice-scoured river shores, river shore ledges, inland cliffs, usually in regions of high-pH bedrock or till.