Brachiaria mutica is a species of grass known by the common names para grass , buffalo grass , Mauritius signal grass , pasto pare , malojilla , gramalote , parana , Carib grass , and Scotch grass. The stems have hairy nodes and leaf sheaths and the leaf blades are up to 2 centimetres 0. It roots at the nodes and detached pieces of the plant will easily take root in moist ground. The paired spikelets are arranged in uneven rows and are elliptical and 2. The rachis is tinged with purple.
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This grass species competes aggressively with other plants, with fast growth, high productivity, and allelopathic abilities that allow it to form dense stands Holm et al. The grass species U.
It was moved to the genus Brachiaria in by Otto Stapf. The current name U. The genus Urochloa is paleotropical and includes 12 species native mainly to the African savannas Torres-Gonzalez and Morton, The weaknesses of the characters used to separate Brachiaria from Urochloa i.
On the other hand, Sharp and Simon maintain the name Brachiaria for all species that occur in Australia and the annual species of Brachiaria are now included in the new genus Moorochloa Veldkamp, The taxonomic positions of these genera still remain unclear.
Culms to 5 m long, long-decumbent and rooting at the lower nodes, vertical portion cm; nodes villous. Lower sheaths with papillose-based hairs, margins ciliate; collars pubescent; ligules Panicles cm long, cm wide, pyramidal, with spikelike branches in more than 2 ranks; primary branches 2. Spikelets 2.
Glumes scarcely separate, lower glumes 0. Caryopses 1. The distribution in this summary table is based on all the information available. When several references are cited, they may give conflicting information on the status. Further details may be available for individual references in the Distribution Table Details section which can be selected by going to Generate Report. It was introduced into Florida in the s and recommended as a forage plant by the Florida Agricultural Experiment Station in Langeland et al.
In Australia, it was introduced into Queensland around to reduce soil erosion along the banks of waterways Hannan-Jones and Csurhes, The risk of introduction of U. It has been intentionally introduced repeatedly in tropical and subtropical regions to be used as a fodder, forage and silage crop Cook et al. It has escaped from cultivation and rapidly naturalized into natural areas where it colonizes forming dense stands and displacing native vegetation Holm et al.
When growing under suitable environmental conditions i. In Florida, the species has been reported growing in coastal berms, hardwood hammocks, mesic and wet flatwoods, bottomland forests, floodplain forests, stream and spring shores, and ruderal communities. The chromosome number reported for U. Pollination is apparently wind-aided and little or no flowering is reported at subtropical latitudes.
In Florida, it flowers from September through December Langeland et al. It is also adapted to grow in wetlands, ponds, and along rivers, creeks and lakes from sea level to about metres in elevation. This species is also attacked by the bacterium Pectobacterium carotovorum var. It can grow up to 5 metres in a year Cook et al.
Seeds and stem segments can also be dispersed by animals such as birds and by cattle. Long-distance dispersal occurs principally through its use as a pasture grass Cook et al. It is invasive in riparian habitats, wetlands, and swamps in Australia, the United States i.
In Australia, U. Here, this grass is destroying the breeding habitat of the magpie goose Anseranas semipalmata and reducing the ability of this bird to feed in open water. It is also one of the major environmental weeds infesting floodplains in the Northern Territory and contributing to the decline of the endangered yellow chat Epthianura crocea tunneyi Queensland Department of Primary Industries and Fisheries, ; Hannan-Jones and Csurhes, In Florida, U.
It also has the potential to alter the water carrying capacity of streams and riparian areas invaded, causing increased flooding in infested water systems Queensland Department of Primary Industries and Fisheries, In Brazil, U. It has also been used to control soil erosion on sloping fields and in seasonally waterlogged areas Cook et al. Due to the variable regulations around de registration of pesticides, your national list of registered pesticides or relevant authority should be consulted to determine which products are legally allowed for use in your country when considering chemical control.
Pesticides should always be used in a lawful manner, consistent with the product's label. A combination of manual and chemical methods is recommended for the management of infestations of U.
In the case of smaller infestations, plants can be cut out and all stolons must be removed. Larger infestations can be controlled by cutting the foliage and the aboveground segments of the grass. Long-term control of treated areas is recommended. The herbicide glyphosate can be applied to actively growing plants at the early head stage, but not to weeds growing over water Queensland Department of Primary Industries and Fisheries, In Florida, a study evaluating the use of non-chemical control of U.
This study shows that roller-chopping followed by flooding, and burning followed by flooding, can be options to control this grass species in areas where herbicides cannot be applied Chaudhari et al. Catalogue of the Seed Plants of the West Indies.
Smithsonian Contributions to Botany, pp. Flora of North America, volume Nonchemical methods for paragrass Urochloa mutica control. Invasive Plant Science and Management, 5 1 A checklist of the total vascular plant flora of Singapore: native, naturalised and cultivated species. A checklist of the total vascular plant flora of Singapore.
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Florida Exotic Pest Plant Council, Contributions from the United States National Herbarium, pp. Invasive plants in Cuba. Plantas Invasoras en Cuba.
Graveson R, Hannan-Jones M, Csurhes S, Para grass- Urichloa mutica. Invasive species risk assessment. The World's Worst Weeds. Distribution and Biology. I3N Brasil, MacKee HS, Catalogue of introduced and cultivated plants in New Caledonia. McCormack G, Cook Islands Biodiversity Database, Version Cook Islands Biodiversity Database.
Morrone O, Zuloaga FO, A revision of the native and introduced South American species of Brachiaria Trin. Poaceae: Panicoideae: Paniceae.
Darwiniana, 31 Darwiniana, Spread of African pasture grasses to the American tropics. Journal of Range Management, 25 1 PIER, Pacific Islands Ecosystems at Risk. PROTA, Queensland Department of Primary Industries and Fisheries, Randall RP, A Global Compendium of Weeds.
Sharp D, Simon BK, AusGrass1: Grasses of Australia. Shirasuna RT, Smith AC, Flora Vitiensis nova: A new flora of Fiji.
Brachiaria mutica Forssk. Stapf [ Poaceae ]. Brachiaria numidiana Lam. Camus; Setaria punctata Burm. Veldkamp; Urochloa mutica Forssk.
Online image request form. This species appears on the following legally prohibited plant lists. Brachiaria mutica , also known as Urochloa mutica , is an invasive grass species native to Africa. In its native lands, Brachiaria is cultivated as a forage grass and was brought to the U. S for this purpose. In areas where para grass is not grazed on by cattle, it has become a serious weed. Upon its introduction to the U.
Center for Aquatic and Invasive Plants
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Brachiaria mutica Forssk. Stapf Poaceae The genera Brachiaria and Urochloa are closely related, and the two are united by some authors. See Veldkamp, Taxon 45 However, this unification is not accepted by all authors - see Flora of China Vol 22 pp Brachiaria and Urochloa are distinguished mainly by habit, Urochloa having rather more flattened, cuspidate spikelets enclosing a pronounced mucro from the upper lemma.