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Overview

Distribution

National Distribution

Canada

Origin: Exotic

Regularity: Regularly occurring

Currently: Unknown/Undetermined

Confidence: Confident

United States

Origin: Exotic

Regularity: Regularly occurring

Currently: Unknown/Undetermined

Confidence: Confident

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Physical Description

Morphology

Physical Description

Perennials, Terrestrial, not aquatic, Rhizomes present, Rhizome elongate, creeping, stems distant, Stolons or runners present, Stems nodes swollen or brittle, Stems erect or ascending, Stems geniculate, decumbent, or lax, sometimes rooting at nodes, Stems caespitose, tufted, or clustered, Stems terete, round in cross section, or polygonal, Stem nodes bearded or hairy, Stem internodes hollow, Stems with inflorescence less than 1 m tall, Stems with inflorescence 1-2 m tall, Stems, culms, or scapes exceeding basal leaves, Leaves mostly cauline, Leaves conspicuously 2-ranked, disticho us, Leaves sheathing at base, Leaf sheath mostly open, or loose, Leaf sheath hairy, hispid or prickly, Leaf sheath and blade differentiated, Leaf blades linear, Leaf blades lanceolate, Leaf blades 2-10 mm wide, Leaf blades 1-2 cm wide, Leaf blades mostly flat, Leaf blade margins folded, involute, or conduplicate, Leaf blades mostly glabrous, Leaf blades more or less hairy, Ligule present, Ligule an unfringed eciliate membrane, Ligule a fringed, ciliate, or lobed membrane, Inflorescence terminal, Inflorescence an open panicle, openly paniculate, branches spreading, Inflorescence solitary, with 1 spike, fascicle, glomerule, head, or cluster per stem or culm, Flowers bisexual, Spikelets pedicellate, Spikelets laterally compressed, Spikelet less than 3 mm wide, Spikelets with 1 fertile floret, Spikelets with 2 florets, Spikelets solitary at rachis nodes, Spikelets all alike and fertille, Spikelets bisexual, Spikelets disarticulating below the glumes, Rachilla or pedicel glabrous , Glumes present, empty bracts, Glumes 2 clearly present, Glumes equal or subequal, Glumes equal to or longer than adjacent lemma, Glume equal to or longer than spikelet, Glumes keeled or winged, Glumes 1 nerved, Glumes 3 nerved, Lemma coriaceous, firmer or thicker in texture than the glumes, Lemma 5-7 nerved, Lemma glabrous, Lemma apex truncate, rounded, or obtuse, Lemma distinctly awned, more than 2-3 mm, Lemma with 1 awn, Lemma awn less than 1 cm long, Lemma awn subapical or dorsal, Lemma awn once geniculate, bent once, Lemma margins thin, lying flat, Lemma straight, Palea present, well developed, Palea about equal to lemma, Palea 2 nerved or 2 keeled, Stamens 3, Styles 2-fid, deeply 2-branched, Stigmas 2, Fruit - caryopsis.
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Dr. David Bogler

Source: USDA NRCS PLANTS Database

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Type Information

Type fragment for Aira mollis Muhl.
Catalog Number: US 1535803
Collection: Smithsonian Institution, National Museum of Natural History, Department of Botany
Verification Degree: Card file verified by examination of alleged type specimen
Preparation: Pressed specimen
Collector(s): H. Muhlenberg
Locality: Pennsylvania, United States, North America
  • Type fragment: Muhlenberg, H. L. 1817. Descript. Gram. 82.
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© Smithsonian Institution, National Museum of Natural History, Department of Botany

Source: National Museum of Natural History Collections

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Ecology

Associations

In Great Britain and/or Ireland:
Foodplant / parasite
Blumeria graminis parasitises live Holcus mollis

Foodplant / spot causer
amphigenous acervulus of Colletotrichum coelomycetous anamorph of Colletotrichum holci causes spots on fading leaf of Holcus mollis
Remarks: season: 7-8

Foodplant / parasite
sorus of Entyloma dactylidis parasitises live leaf of Holcus mollis
Other: major host/prey

Foodplant / gall
stroma of Epichlo causes gall of stem of Holcus mollis

Foodplant / saprobe
fruitbody of Marasmius curreyi is saprobic on dead, decayed stem of Holcus mollis
Other: major host/prey

Foodplant / parasite
amphigenous, scattered or in patches uredium of Puccinia coronata parasitises live leaf of Holcus mollis
Remarks: season: summer

Foodplant / parasite
telium of Puccinia hordei parasitises live stem of Holcus mollis
Other: minor host/prey

Foodplant / spot causer
deeply immersed, very minute, hardly visible, black pycnidium of Septoria coelomycetous anamorph of Septoria holci causes spots on fading leaf of Holcus mollis
Remarks: season: 8

Foodplant / pathogen
embedded sorus of Tilletia holci infects and damages ovary of Holcus mollis
Remarks: season: 6-9

Foodplant / spot causer
long, linear, erumpent sorus of Ustilago striiformis causes spots on live, blistered leaf of Holcus mollis
Other: major host/prey

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Molecular Biology and Genetics

Molecular Biology

Barcode data: Holcus mollis

The following is a representative barcode sequence, the centroid of all available sequences for this species.


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Source: Barcode of Life Data Systems (BOLD)

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Statistics of barcoding coverage: Holcus mollis

Barcode of Life Data Systems (BOLDS) Stats
Public Records: 8
Specimens with Barcodes: 8
Species With Barcodes: 1
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Source: Barcode of Life Data Systems (BOLD)

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Conservation

Conservation Status

National NatureServe Conservation Status

Canada

Rounded National Status Rank: NNA - Not Applicable

United States

Rounded National Status Rank: NNA - Not Applicable

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NatureServe Conservation Status

Rounded Global Status Rank: GNR - Not Yet Ranked

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Wikipedia

Holcus mollis

Holcus mollis, known as creeping soft grass or creeping velvet grass, is a species of grass, native to Europe and western Asia.

Characteristics[edit source | edit]

Young (left) and mature inflorescences

Holcus mollis is a rhizomatous perennial grass found in woods and hedgerows, growing to 50 centimetres (20 in) tall. It has rhizomes that occur around 5 cm (2.0 in) deep in soil or sometimes deeper. Rhizome growth occurs in the period May to November but is fastest from mid-June to mid-July. The rhizomes have many dormant buds that do not develop unless the rhizomes are disturbed and then fresh aerial shoots may arise from the broken fragments. It flowers from June to July.

The main distinguishing characteristics from H. lanatus are the presence of rhizomes, and the bearded nodes or 'hairy knees' on the culm.[1]

Habitat preference[edit source | edit]

Holcus mollis is favoured by conditions in woodland clearings and at the early stages of coppicing. Growth and flowering are restricted as the tree canopy develops. It is often a relict of former woodland vegetation, surviving in open grassland and grassy heaths after woodland clearance despite being a shade lover. It is found mostly on moist, freely-drained acid soils, normally light to medium texture and high in organic matter; it is absent from areas of calcareous or base rich soil, and often grows with bracken.

Insect foodplant[edit source | edit]

The caterpillars of some Lepidoptera use it as a food plant, e.g. the Essex Skipper (Thymelicus lineola).

Status as a weed[edit source | edit]

In a survey of weeds in conventional cereals in central southern England in 1982, it was found in 1% of winter barley but not at all in winter wheat or spring barley.

Each small piece of rhizome is capable of developing into a new plant. Research shows that within 6–8 inches (150–200 mm) of the surface, 1 square foot (0.093 m2) of rhizome infested soil may contain up to 110 feet (34 m) of rhizome, the weight of roots and rhizomes being estimated at 7.5 tons per acre.[2]

Varieties and hybridisation[edit source | edit]

A pentaploid variant of H. mollis is common in Britain; it is sterile but spreads vegetatively. H. mollis var. variegatus has striped green and white leaves; it is sometimes cultivated.[2]

A male sterile hybrid with Holcus lanatus exists with 2n = 21 chromosomes.[2] Hybrids tend to resemble H. lanatus in their morphology.[3]

References[edit source | edit]

Bibliography[edit source | edit]

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