Muhlenbergia elongata Scribn. ex Beal (redirected from: Muhlenbergia xerophila)
Family: Poaceae
sycamore muhly
[Muhlenbergia xerophila C.O. Goodding]
Muhlenbergia elongata image
Sue Carnahan  

Plants perennial; cespitose, not rhizomatous. Culms 40-120 cm, erect, not conspicuously branched; internodes mostly smooth, sometimes scabridulous below the nodes. Sheaths longer than the internodes, smooth or scabridulous, rounded towards the base, not becoming spirally coiled when old; ligules 2-8 mm, firm below, membranous distally, obtuse to acute; blades 15-50 cm long, 0.3-1.5 mm wide, flat to involute, smooth or scabridulous abaxially, hirtellous adaxially. Panicles 15-50 cm long, 1-7 cm wide, loosely contracted, not dense; primary branches 1-8 cm, appressed or diverging up to 30° from the rachises, naked basally; pedicels 1.3-8 mm, hispidulous. Spikelets 3-4.2 mm. Glumes subequal, 2-3 mm, exceeded by the florets, glabrous below, minutely pubescent or scabridulous distally, 1-veined, acuminate to acute, unawned or awned, awns to 1.6 mm; lemmas 2.8-4.2 mm, narrow, lanceolate, calluses hairy, hairs to 1 mm, lemma bodies glabrous and smooth below, scabridulous distally, apices acuminate, awned, awns 8-40 mm, straight to flexuous, demarcation of the awns from the lemma bodies not evident; paleas 2.8-4.2 mm, narrowly lanceolate, glabrous, acuminate; anthers 1.4-2.2 mm, yellow. Caryopses 2-2.2 mm, fusiform, brownish. 2n = unknown.

Muhlenbergia elongata grows on rock outcrops, cliffs, canyon walls, and moist rock walls, on rhyolitic and volcanic conglomerates, at elevations of 850-2100 m. It extends south from Arizona into northern Mexico.

FNA 2003, Gould 1980
Common Name: sycamore muhly Duration: Perennial Nativity: Native Lifeform: Graminoid General: Tufted perennial with stems 40-120 cm, erect, not really branched, with mostly smooth internodes, sometimes minutely roughened below the nodes, sheaths longer than internodes, rounded towards base, not becoming spirally coiled when old. Vegetative: Blades 15-50 cm long, 0.5-1.5 mm wide, flat to involute, smooth to minutely roughened below, hirtellous above, ligules 2-8 mm, firm below broadly rounded. Inflorescence: Panicle 15-50 cm long, 1-7 cm wide, loosely contracted, light brown to pink tinged, primary branches 1-8 cm, appressed or diverging to 30 degrees from the rachises, naked basally, pedicels 1.5-8 mm, hispidulous, spikelets 3-4.5 mm, glumes subequal, 2-3 mm, exceeded by the florets, glabrous below, minutely pubescent or minutely roughened above, acuminate to acute, unawned or awned, awns to 1.5 mm, lemmas 2.5-4.5 mm, narrow, lanceolate, hairs to 1 mm, lemmas bodies glabrous and smooth below, minutely roughened above, awned with awns 8-40 mm, straight to flexuous. Ecology: Found on rock outcrops, cliffs, on canyon walls and moist rock walls, often on rhyolitic or volcanic conglomerates from 4,000-6,000 ft (1219-1829 m); flowers August-November. Notes: Rare species that is known from the type in Sycamore Canyon in Santa Cruz county. Similar in appearance to M. rigida, but without the tight spike inflorescence. Ethnobotany: Unknown Etymology: Muhlenbergia is named for Gotthilf Heinrich Ernst Muhlenberg (1753-1815) a clergyman and botanist from Pennsylvania; elongata means elongated or lengthened. Synonyms: Muhlenbergia xerophila Editor: SBuckley, 2010
Muhlenbergia elongata image
National Museum of Natural History Image Collection  
Muhlenbergia elongata image
National Museum of Natural History Image Collection  
Muhlenbergia elongata image
National Museum of Natural History Image Collection  
Muhlenbergia elongata image
National Museum of Natural History Image Collection  
Muhlenbergia elongata image
National Museum of Natural History Image Collection  
Muhlenbergia elongata image
National Museum of Natural History Image Collection  
The National Science Foundation
This project made possible by National Science Foundation Award 1410069