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Muhlenbergia bushii

(Bush's Muhly)


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Common Names

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Common Names in English:

Bush's Muhly, Nodding Muhly


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Family Poaceae

Annual or perennial herbs, or tall woody bamboos . Flowering stems (culms ) jointed , internodes hollow or solid; branches arising singly from nodes and subtended by a leaf sheath and 2-keeled prophyll, often fascicled in bamboos. Leaves arranged alternately in 2 ranks , differentiated into sheath, blade , and an adaxial erect appendage at sheath/blade junction (ligule) ; leaf sheath surrounding and supporting culm-internode, split to base or infrequently tubular with partially or completely fused margins , modified with reduced blade in bamboos (culm sheaths) ; leaf blades divergent, usually long, narrow and flat, but varying from inrolled and filiform to ovate , veins parallel, sometimes with cross-connecting veinlets (especially in bamboos) ; ligule membranous or a line of hairs . Inflorescence terminal or axillary , an open, contracted , or spikelike panicle, or composed of lax to spikelike racemes arranged along an elongate central axis, or digitate, paired , or occasionally solitary; axillary inflorescences often many, subtended by spatheoles (specialized bladeless leaf sheaths) and gathered into a leafy compound panicle; spikelets often aggregated into complex clusters in bamboos. Spikelets composed of distichous bracts arranged along a slender axis (rachilla) ; typically 2 lowest bracts (glumes ) empty, subtending 1 to many florets ; glumes often poorly differentiated from accompanying bracts in bamboos. Florets composed of 2 opposing bracts enclosing a single small flower, outer bract (lemma) clasping the more delicate, usually 2-keeled inner bract (palea) ; base of floret often with thickened prolongation articulated with rachilla (callus) ; lemma often with apical or dorsal bristle (awn ), glumes also sometimes awned . Flowers bisexual or unisexual ; lodicules (small scales representing perianth) 2, rarely 3 or absent, 3 to many in bamboos, hyaline or fleshy ; stamens 3 rarely 1, 2, 6, or more in some bamboos, hypogynous, filaments capillary , anthers versatile; ovary 1-celled, styles (1 or) 2(rarely 3), free or united at base, topped by feathery stigmas, exserted from sides or apex of floret. Fruit normally a dry indehiscent caryopsis with thin pericarp firmly adherent to seed, pericarp rarely free, fleshy in some bamboos; embryo small or large; hilum punctate to linear .

About 700 genera and 11,000 species: widely distributed in all regions of the world.[1]

Genus Muhlenbergia

Perennial , usually with creeping scaly rhizomes. Culms erect , ascending or decumbent at base . Leaf blades linear to narrowly lanceolate; ligule membranous, sometimes minutely ciliolate . Inflorescence an open or contracted panicle. Spikelets with 1 floret, lanceolate, slightly laterally compressed , rachilla disarticulating above glumes ; glumes shorter than or equal to lemma, subequal or the upper shorter, thin, usually 1-veined or the lower veinless, persistent ; callus small, obtuse ; lemma 3-veined, membranous, dark green mottled with dark gray, laxly pilose toward base on abaxial surface, awned from acute apex or from between two minute teeth; awn straight or flexuose; palea equal to the lemma, membranous. Caryopsis usually fusiform , rarely ellipsoid . x = 10.

About 155 species: mainly SW North America and Mexico, also Central and South America and SE Asia; six species in China.

Many species of this genus are good fodder plants .[2]

Physical Description

Habit: Graminoid


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Duration: Perennial


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Carpopogon atropurpureum Roxb. • Dolichos pruriens L. • Mucuna axillaris Baker • Mucuna bernieriana Baill. • Mucuna cochinchinensis (Lour.)a. Chev. • Mucuna esquirolii H. Lev. • Mucuna minima Haines • Mucuna nivea< /i> (Roxb.)dc.Mucuna prurita (L.)hook. • Stizolobium atropurpureum (Roxb.)kuntze • Stizolobium pruritum (Wight)piper


Name Status: Accepted Name .

Last scrutiny: 15-Mar-2000

Similar Species

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Members of the genus Muhlenbergia

ZipcodeZoo has pages for 89 species, subspecies, varieties, forms, and cultivars in this genus:

M. andina (Foxtail Muhly) · M. appressa (Devil's Canyon Muhly) · M. arenacea (Ear Muhly) · M. arenicola (Sand Muhly) · M. arizonica (Arizona Muhly) · M. arsenei (Navajo Muhly) · M. asperifolia (Alkali Muhly) · M. brevis (Short Muhly) · M. bushii (Bush's Muhly) · M. californica (California Muhly) · M. capillaris (Cutover Muhly) · M. capillaris var. capillaris (Hairawn Muhly) · M. capillaris var. filipes (Gulf Hairawn Muhle) · M. capillaris var. filipes'Kiawah' (Gulf Hairawn Muhly) · M. capillaris var. trichopodes (Cutover Muhly) · M. capillaris 'Regal Mist' (Florida Muhly Grass) · M. crispiseta (Mexicali Muhly) · M. curtifolia (Low Muhly) · M. curtisetosa (Illinois Nimblewill) · M. cuspidata (Plains Muhlenbergia) · M. depauperata (Six-Weeks Muhly) · M. dubia (Cane Muhly) · M. dumosa (Bamboo Muhly) · M. elongata (Sycamore Muhly) · M. eludens (Gravel-Bar Muhly) · M. emersleyi (Bull Grass) · M. filiculmis (Slim-Stem Muhly) · M. filiformis (Pull-Up Muhly) · M. filiformis var. filiformis (Pullup Muhly) · M. fragilis (Annual Muhly) · M. frondosa (Wire-Stem Muhly) · M. glabriflora (Inland Muhly) · M. glabrifloris (Hair Grass) · M. glauca (Desert Muhly) · M. glomerata (Bristly Muhly) · M. gooddingii (Goodding's Muhly) · M. involuta (Canyon Muhly) · M. jonesii (Modoc Muhly) · M. lindheimeri (Big Muhly Grass) · M. longiligula (Long-Tongue Muhly) · M. macroura (Muhly) · M. metcalfi (Metcalfe's Muhly) · M. mexicana (Leafy Muhly) · M. mexicana filiformis (Slim Stemmed Mexican Muhly) · M. mexicana f. ambigua (Wirestem Muhly) · M. mexicana mexicana (Wire Stemmed Muhly) · M. mexicana var. mexicana (Mexican Muhly) · M. microsperma (Little-Seed Muhly) · M. minutissima (Annual Muhly) · M. montana (Mountain Muhly) · M. palmeri (Southwestern Muhly) · M. parviglumis (Long-Awn Muhly) · M. pauciflora (Few-Flowered Muhly) · M. pectinata (Comb Muhly) · M. peruviana (Peruvian Muhly) · M. polycaulis (Cliff Muhly) · M. porteri (Bush Muhly) · M. pungens (Sandhill Muhly) · M. racemosa (Green Muhly) · M. ramulosa (Green Muhly) · M. repens (Creeping Muhly) · M. reverchonii (Seep Muhly) · M. richardsonis (Mat Muhly) · M. rigens (Deer Grass) · M. rigida (Metcalf Muhly) · M. rigida 'Nashville' (Purple Muhly) · M. schreberi (Nimblewill) · M. setifolia (Curly-Leaf Muhly) · M. sinuosa (Marshland Muhly) · M. sobolifera (Cliff Muhly) · M. spiciformis (Longawn Muhly) · M. sylvatica (Forest Muhly) · M. sylvatica var. sylvatica (Woodland Muhly) · M. tenuiflora (Slender Muhly) · M. tenuiflora var. tenuiflora (Slender Muhly) · M. tenuifolia (Mesa Muhly) · M. texana (Texas Muhly) · M. thurberi (Thurber Muhly) · M. torreyana (New Jersey Muhly) · M. torreyi (Ring Muhly) · M. trichopodes (Cutover Muhly) · M. uniflora (Bog Muhly) · M. utilis (Aparejo Grass) · M. villiflora (Hairy Muhly) · M. villiflora var. villosa (Hairy Muhly) · M. virescens (Screwleaf Muhly) · M. wrightii (Spike Muhly) · M. x curtisetosa (Hybrid) · M. x involuta (Involuta Muhly)

More Info

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Further Reading

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Data Sources

Accessed through GBIF Data Portal February 28, 2008:



  1. Shou-liang Chen, De-Zhu Li, Guanghua Zhu, Zhenlan Wu, Sheng-lian Lu, Liang Liu, Zheng-ping Wang, Bi-xing Sun, Zheng-de Zhu, Nianhe Xia, Liang-zhi Jia, Zhenhua Guo, Wenli Chen, Xiang Chen, Yang Guangyao, Sylvia M. Phillips, Chris Stapleton, Robert J. Soreng, Susan G. Aiken, Nikolai N. Tzvelev, Paul M. Peterson, Stephen A. Renvoize, Marina V. Olonova & Klaus Ammann "Poaceae". in Flora of China Vol. 22. Published by Science Press (Beijing) and Missouri Botanical Garden Press. Online at [back]
  2. Zhen-lan Wu & Paul M. Peterson "Muhlenbergia". in Flora of China Vol. 22 Page 7, 457, 486. Published by Science Press (Beijing) and Missouri Botanical Garden Press. Online at [back]
Last Revised: 2015-01-30