Deccan Finger Grass
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Deccan Finger Grass
P Native Photo: Aarti Khale
Common name: Deccan Finger Grass
Botanical name: Chloris bournei    Family: Poaceae (Grass family)

Deccan Finger Grass is a perennial grass with stems somewhat stout, clustered, erect or rising up geniculately from a creeping and rooting base, varying in length from 1 to 3 feet and with internodes up to 6 inches becoming longer upwards. The leaf-sheaths are equal to or longer than the internodes at the base, but shorter above. The ligule is a narrow membranous ridge. Nodes are thickened, deeply purple ringed, hairless and the lower nodes always with a fan-like cluster of flattened leaf-sheaths and leaves. The leaf-blades are linear, finely tapering, slightly broadened and rounded at the base, keeled, 2.5-22 cm by 2-6 mm. The inflorescence consists of digitately arranged spikes 1-1/2 to 4 inches long on a flower-cluster-stalk which is sometimes 15 inches long. Spikes are stout, purple-tinged, three to seven and even nine in some specimens, shortly stalked, the base of the stalk being slightly swollen and hairy at the base, the axis is slender, somewhat hairy towards the base. The spikelets are about 3 mm excluding the awn, very shortly stalked, biseriate, unilateral, disarticulating above the first two glumes which are persistent, purplish or pale, 1- to 3-flowered, usually 3- to 4-awned and sometimes 5-awned; awns are purplish 5-8 mm long, finely rough. There are five or seven glumes in a spikelet. Deccan Finger Grass is native to Peninsular India.

Identification credit: Manoj Chandran Photographed in Nasik, Maharashtra.

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