Taxon Details: Microstegium vimineum (Trin.) A.Camus
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Poaceae (Magnoliophyta)
Scientific Name:

Microstegium vimineum (Trin.) A.Camus
Primary Citation:

Fl. Gen. Indo-Chine 7: 260. 1922
Accepted Name:

This name is currently accepted.
Common Names:

Nepalese browntop, Nepalese browntop, Japanese stiltgrass

Family name: Poaceae. The grass family.


Common name: Japanese stiltgrass

Description: Annual herb (grass), forms abundant runners. Stem nodes without trichomes. Leaf blades often have a pale, shiny line along the midrib on upper surface; ligule present. Fertile glumes with awn at apex.

Similar species: Leersia virginica (whitegrass) is similar to stiltgrass and the two species sometimes even grow intermingled with one another. Whitegrass does not have the shiny, silver color along the midrib, has tufts of trichomes (hairs) at the nodes, and does not have awns associated with the flowers.

Origen: Native range tropical Asia. Introduced in 1919 in Tennesssee as packing material for porcelain (Sarver et al., 2008.

Distribution: Northeastern and southeastern United States.

Ecology: Most common along roads but also found in moist forests and riparian areas. Reproduces by seed and by runners. This species can grow in very large patches.

Phenology: Annual. Flowers in late summer early fall. Produces large numbers of seeds in the fall.

Conservation Status: Invasive.

Notes: This species is very difficult to control because of its large seed production and because the seeds are viable in the soil for at least seven years. The most important control method is to kill the plants before they set seed, e.g. by pulling, mowing, burning, and spraying with certified organic herbicides. Make sure that permits are obtained for spraying if they are required. It is especially important to remove plants of this species if they appear at entrances into the Preserve.

Flora and Monograph Treatment(s):

Microstegium vimineum (Trin.) A.Camus: [Book] Gleason, Henry A. & Cronquist, Arthur J. 1991. Manual of vascular plants of northeastern United States and adjacent Canada. lxxv + 910 pp.
Microstegium vimineum (Trin.) A.Camus: [Article] Burcham, Levi T. 1948. Observations on the grass flora of certain Pacific Islands. Contr. U. S. Natl. Herb. 302: 405-447. pl. 1-7 + f. 1-4.
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