Perennial grasses, with flat or involute leaf-blades and contracted or open panicles. Spikelets 3-several-flowered. Lower scales empty, obtuse or acute, unequal; flowering scales obtuse or acute, rounded on the back, 5-nerved, the nerves very obscure or almost wanting. Palet about equalling the scale. Stamens 3. Styles wanting. Stigmas sessile, simply plumose. Grain compressed, usually adhering to the palet. [Name in honor of Benedetto Purcinelli, Italian botanist.]

About 14 species, in all temperate regions. Type species: Poa distans L.

Flowering scales 1 1/4" long or more; plants stoloniferous.

Lower flowering scales 1 1/2"-2" long; spikelets commonly 4-many-flowered.

1. P.


Lower flowering scales not exceeding 1 1/2" long, usually less; spikelets generally 2-4-flowered.




Flowering scales less than 1 1/4" long; plants without stolons.

Second empty scale less than one-half as long as the first flowering scale, broad, usually obtuse or truncate.

Panicle-branches naked below, spikelet-bearing toward the apex; flowering scales 1" long or

less, truncate at the apex.



, distans.

Panicle-branches spikelet-bearing to the base; flowering scales 1"-1 1/4" long, acutish or

obtuse at the apex.




Second empty scale more than one-half as long as the first flowering scale, usually narrow, obtuse

or acute.




1. Puccinellia maritima (Huds.) Parl.

Goose-Grass. Sea Spear-Grass

Fig. 643

Poa maritima Huds. Fl. Angl. 35. 1762. Glyccria maritima M. & K. Deutsch. Fl. 1: 588.

1823. Puccinellia maritima Parl. Fl. Ital. 1: 370. 1848.

Stoloniferous, smooth, glabrous, culms 6'-2° tall, erect, or decumbent at the base, simple. Sheaths usually exceeding the internodes; ligule 1/2"-1" long; blades 1/2'-5' long, 1" wide or less, flat to involute; panicle 2'-6' in length, open, the branches ascending, or rarely erect, 1'-2' long; spikelets 3-10-flowered, 3"-6" long; empty scales unequal, the first usually 1-nerved, the second 3-nerved; flowering scales 1 1/2"-2" long, broad, obtuse or truncate.

In salt marshes and on sea beaches, Nova Scotia to Rhode Island. Also on the Pacific coast, and on the coasts of Europe and Asia. Sea Meadow-grass. July-Aug.

Goose Grass Sea Spear Grass 643Goose Grass Sea Spear Grass 644