This family includes food crops, turf, and important
industrial crops. Poaceae is the most important family of
food crops, including the cereals, wheat Triticum,
corn Zea and rice (Oryza). Other economic uses
of cereals or their byeproducts iclude newsprint, ethyl
alcohol, and insulation materials. The family includes turf
grasses and many other ornamental grasses. Some members of
the Poceae form the dominant vegatation in warm and
temperate regions where the rainfall does not support
Features of the Poaceae include:
- either annuals or perennials.
- alternate leaves with extended blades and clasping
- stems, or culms, are normally hollow and round, and
enclosed by leaf sheaths.
- all species have parallel leaf venation.
- flowers form a in a spikelet with a primary axis
called the rachilla
- sepals and petals are absent; there are two glumes or
bracts at the base of the spikelet, and each flower is
usually enclosed in two further bracts, the lemma and
- normally there are three stamens and only one pistil
with two stigma
- the ovary is superior and contains one ovule forming
an achene like fruit or caryopsis