Australian Tropical Rainforest Plants banner
  • Species information
  • About
  • Resources
  • Home
banner
ABCDEFGHIJKLMNOPQRSTUVWXYZ

Cenchrus echinatus

Family

Poaceae

Botanical Name

Cenchrus echinatus L.

Linnaeus, C. (1753) Species Plantarum Edn. 1 2: 1050. Type: Habitat in Jamaica, Curassao.

Common name

Mossman River Burr

Weed

*

Stem

An annual grass that is erect or decumbent at the base, somewhat tufted, branched; roots fibrous; culms 25-90 cm tall, the lower part often prostrate, compressed, rooting at the nodes, often reddish at the nodes.

Leaves

Leaf sheaths smooth or with few stiff hairs on the margins on the upper portion; ligule 0.5-1.7 mm long, with marginal hairs; blades smooth to hairy, 5-30 x 0.5 to 1 cm, flat, lower surface smooth, upper side rough, slightly hairy at the base.

Flowers

Inflorescence a spike, dense, cylindric, 2.5-10 cm long, ca. 1 cm in diameter; the burs five to 50 or more, not crowded, almost sessile, globular, densely arranged, 3-6 mm in diameter, 5-10 mm long; the spines or bristles 2-3.5 mm long, usually turning purple with age, sometimes straw-colored, the basal bristles numerous, usually turned downward, inner bristles attached below the middle of the the bur, bristles united for about one-half their length to form a deep cup, hairy, bristles irregular in size and thickness; spikelets two to four (usually three) in each bur, about 5-7 mm long.

Fruit

Grains with adherent pericarp, ovoid, dorsally compressed, 1.6-3.2 x 1.3- 2.2 mm, truncate, glabrous.

Seedlings

Features not available.

Distribution and Ecology

Occurs in WA, NT, CYP, NEQ and NSW. Altitudinal range from near sea level to . Prefers sandy soils and grows in openings in rainforest, Eucalyptus forest, various types of woodland and commonly on coastal dunes. Also from Africa, India, Arabia and Asia.

Natural History

A widespread and common weed, particularly on sandy soils and at the beach

WA

X

NT

X

CYP

X

NEQ

X

Grass

X

RFK Code

4251