Australian Tropical Rainforest Plants - Online edition

Scleria ciliaris Nees

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Inflorescence. © G. Sankowsky
Leaves. © G. Sankowsky
Leaf bases. © G. Sankowsky
Herbarium sheet. © CSIRO

Nees von Esenbeck, C.G.D. in Wight, R. (1834) Contributions to the Botany of India : 117.

Common name



Perennial with strongly triquetrous stems 70-100 cm tall; base of stems clothed in purple sheaths; roots purple.


Lamina with 2 veins, scabrous on the margins and veins in the upper part, 0.75-1.5 cm wide. Apex nearly obtuse. Lamina sheath winged, contraligule with long tongue-like lobe at the apex.


Inflorescence consisting of 2-3 partial panicles and a terminal one, very dense; primary bracts overtopping the inflorescence. Flower bract rigid and longer than the spikelet. Spikelets unisexual and 2-3 together, 4-5 mm long, male spikelets lanceolate, female spikelets ovate with a sterile lateral glume. Glume with green keel, rest chartaceous. Disc white, 3-lobed. Anthers with long reddish brown aqppendages at the apex.


Nut ovoid to subglobose, trigonous with a glossy testa and large shallow pits with short hairs on the margins. Disc persistent.


Features not available.

Distribution and Ecology

Occurs in NT, CYP, NEQ and CEQ. Altitudinal range from m. Grows in along streams in rainforest, Melaleuca swamp forest, gallery forest, deciduous vine forest and in swampy areas in woodland, grassland and coastal heathland. Also from Indo-China, Malesia and the Pacific Islands.

RFK Code
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