Festuca costata Nees

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Synonyms: Festuca milanjiana Rendle
Common names:
Status: Native
Densely tufted perennial. Culms 50-120(150) cm. tall, 1-3-noded, stiffly erect, terete, growing from a slightly thickened base, glabrous, smooth. Leaf-sheaths finely striate, open, fairly tight; the older ones remaining, splitting into regular thin brown fibres, which conspicuously surround the culm-bases. Ligule up to 4 mm. long. Leaf-lamina 10-60 cm. long, 2-4 mm. wide, usually involute, very rarely expanded, tapering to a setaceous point, erect or obliquely ascending, glabrous, smooth but scaberulous along the edges. Panicle up to 25 cm. long, loose and open, rarely somewhat contracted, erect or slightly drooping; branches usually 2-nate, rather slender, flexuous, branched above the middle, the lower ones fairly remote. Pedicels of unequal length, filiform. Spikelets 10-20 mm. long, 3-6-flowered, green but often tinged with purple, gaping, often drooping. Glumes 3-nerved, unequal, lanceolate, acute; the inferior 3·5-6·6 mm. long; the superior 4-8 mm. long. Lemmas 6-10 mm. long, chartaceous, lanceolate, dorsally scaberulous, with the apex subobtuse, acute or very shortly mucronulate from below two minute apical lobes. Paleas with the keels scabrous. Anthers c. 3·5 mm. long. Ovary glabrous or pubescent at the apex.
Derivation of specific name:
Habitat: In montane grassland sometimes also found in forest clearings
Altitude range: 2400 - 3000 m
Flowering time:
Worldwide distribution: Distributed throughout eastern Africa from Kenya southwards and extending into South Africa, Lesotho, Malawi, Mozambique, Zimbabwe
Mozambique distribution: MS
Growth form(s):
Endemic status:
Red data list status:
Insects associated with this species:
Spot characters: Display spot characters for this species

Burrows, J.E. & Willis, C.K. (eds) (2005). Plants of the Nyika Plateau Southern African Botanical Diversity Network Report No. 31 SABONET, Pretoria Page 348.

Chapano, C. & Mamuto, M. (2003). Plants of the Chimanimani District National Herbarium and Botanic Garden, Zimbabwe Page 27.

Jackson, G. & Wiehe, P.O. (1958). An Annotated Check List of Nyasaland Grasses The Government Printer, Zomba, Nyasaland Page 42. As Festuca milanjiana

Launert, E. (1971). Poaceae Flora Zambesiaca 10(1) Pages 55 - 57.

Mapaura, A. & Timberlake, J. (eds) (2004). A checklist of Zimbabwean vascular plants Southern African Botanical Diversity Network Report No. 33 Sabonet, Pretoria and Harare Page 105.

Strugnell, A.M. (2006). A Checklist of the Spermatophytes of Mount Mulanje, Malawi Scripta Botanica Belgica 34 National Botanic Garden of Belgium Page 148.

Wursten, B., Timberlake, J. & Darbyshire, I. (2017). The Chimanimani Mountains: an updated checklist. Kirkia 19(1) Page 85.

Other sources of information about Festuca costata:

Our websites:

Flora of Malawi: Festuca costata
Flora of Zimbabwe: Festuca costata

External websites:

African Plants: A Photo Guide (Senckenberg): Festuca costata
African Plant Database: Festuca costata
BHL (Biodiversity Heritage Library): Festuca costata
EOL (Encyclopedia of Life): Festuca costata
ePIC (electronic Plant Information Center): Festuca costata
Flora Zambesiaca web site: Festuca costata
GBIF (Global Biodiversity Information Facility): Festuca costata
Google: Web - Images - Scholar
GRIN (Germplasm Resources Information Network): Festuca costata
iNaturalist: Festuca costata
IPNI (International Plant Names Index): Festuca costata
JSTOR Plant Science: Festuca costata
Kew Herbarium catalogue: Festuca costata
Kew Monocotyledon checklist: Festuca costata
Mansfeld World Database of Agricultural and Horticultural Crops: Festuca costata
Plants of the World Online: Festuca costata
Tropicos: Festuca costata
Wikipedia: Festuca costata

Copyright: Mark Hyde, Bart Wursten, Petra Ballings and Meg Coates Palgrave 2007-22

Hyde, M.A., Wursten, B.T., Ballings, P. & Coates Palgrave, M. (2022). Flora of Mozambique: Species information: Festuca costata.
https://www.mozambiqueflora.com/speciesdata/species.php?species_id=103550, retrieved 16 May 2022

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