Scientific Name:
Phalaris canariensis L. (1753)
Vernacular Name(s):
Birdseed grass; Canary grass; Pātītī

Slender to stout, tufted annuals, 35–90 cm. Leaf-sheath firm, minutely scabrid or smooth, striate, green to light brown, upper sheaths slightly inflated. Ligule 2–6 mm, tapered, erose. Leaf-blade 7.5–30 cm × 4–10 mm, finely ribbed, ribs minutely scabrid; margins finely scabrid, long-narrowed to acute tip. Culm 30–80 cm, often branched near base, internodes scabrid just below panicle. Panicle 2–3.5–(6) × 1.5–2.5 cm, ovoid to ovoid-oblong, subtended by a hard, scabrid, very short bract; rachis and branches hidden, finely scabrid-papillose. Spikelets 7–8.5 mm, pale greenish cream, rarely purplish. Glumes ± equal, 3–5-nerved, oblanceolate with abrupt acute tip, sparsely hairy, cream with green bands along nerves, keel minutely scabrid, broadly winged in upper ½. Ø florets: lemmas equal, 2.5–4 mm, lanceolate, acute, very sparsely hairy. ☿ floret: lemma 4.5–5.6 mm, ovate, acute, shining, silky-haired; palea narrower than lemma; anthers 2–3.8 mm; caryopsis c. 4 × 1.4 mm.

[From: Edgar and Connor (2000) Flora of New Zealand. Volume 5 (second printing).]