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Useful Tropical Plants

Setaria pumila

(Poir.) Roem. & Schult.

Poaceae

+ Synonyms

Chaetochloa glauca purpurea Farw.

Chaetochloa lutescens Weigel ex Stuntz

Panicum glaucum flavescens Elliott

Panicum glaucum laevigatum J.Le Conte ex Torr.

Panicum imberbe pumilum (Poir.) Nees

Panicum lutescens Weigel

Panicum pallidefuscum Schumach.

Panicum pumilum Poir.

Panicum rubiginosum Steud.

Setaria aurea rubiginosa (Steud.) Peter

Setaria erythraeae Mattei

Setaria glauca pumila (Poir.) Podp.

Setaria lutescens (Weigel ex Stuntz) F.T.Hubb.

Setaria pallide-fusca (Schumach.) Stapf & C.E.Hubb.

Setaria rubiginosa (Steud.) Miq.

Setaria ustilata de Wit

Common Name: Yellow Bristle Grass

Setaria pumila
Flowering stems
Photograph by: Fagg, M.
Image credit to Australian National Botanic Gardens
Setaria pumila Setaria pumila Setaria pumila Setaria pumila Setaria pumila

General Information

Yellow bristle grass is an annual, clump-forming erect grass usually growing from 25 - 60 cm tall, but can range from 5 - 130cm.
The edible seed is sometimes gathered from the wild and used locally.

Known Hazards

None known

Botanical References

50
Title
Flora Europaea
Publication
 
Author
?
Publisher
Cambridge University Press
Year
1964
ISBN
-
Description
An immense work in 6 volumes (including the index). The standard reference flora for Europe, it is very terse though and with very little extra information. Not for the casual reader.
,
58
Title
Flora of Japan. (English translation)
Publication
 
Author
Ohwi. G.
Publisher
Smithsonian Institution
Year
1965
ISBN
-
Description
The standard work. Brilliant, but not for the casual reader.
,
200
Title
The New RHS Dictionary of Gardening. 1992.
Publication
 
Author
Huxley. A.
Publisher
MacMillan Press
Year
1992
ISBN
0-333-47494-5
Description
Excellent and very comprehensive, though it contains a number of silly mistakes. Readable yet also very detailed.

Range

A cosmopolitan plant, originally from temperate and subtropical Asia and Europe.

Habitat

Waste ground, cultivated fields and lowland all over Japan[
58
Title
Flora of Japan. (English translation)
Publication
 
Author
Ohwi. G.
Publisher
Smithsonian Institution
Year
1965
ISBN
-
Description
The standard work. Brilliant, but not for the casual reader.
].

Properties

Weed PotentialYes
Edibility Rating *  *
Other Uses Rating *  *
HabitAnnual
Height0.75 m
PollinatorsWind
Cultivation StatusWild

Cultivation Details

A world-wide weed, found from the temperate zone to the tropics. In the tropics, it is found in areas where the mean annual rainfall is 500mm or more[
375
Title
Grassland Species - Profiles
Publication
 
Author
 
Website
http://www.fao.org/ag/AGP/AGPC/doc/Gbase/Default.htm
Publisher
 
Year
0
ISBN
 
Description
Terse information on over 650 species of plants that grow in grassland, including trees, shrubs and perennial plants as well as grasses. Gives a brief description of the plant, its range and habitat and some of its uses.
].
Succeeds in any well-drained soil in full sun[
200
Title
The New RHS Dictionary of Gardening. 1992.
Publication
 
Author
Huxley. A.
Publisher
MacMillan Press
Year
1992
ISBN
0-333-47494-5
Description
Excellent and very comprehensive, though it contains a number of silly mistakes. Readable yet also very detailed.
]. The plant is especially well suited to dry soil conditions[
305
Title
Pacific Island Ecosystems at Risk
Publication
 
Author
 
Website
http://www.hear.org/pier/scientificnames/index.html
Publisher
 
Year
0
ISBN
 
Description
A very good website detailing weed species that have been introduced into the Pacific Islands.
].
The plant has become a weed in many areas of the world, where it infests dryland crops, roadsides, waste areas, ditches and occasionally grasslands[
305
Title
Pacific Island Ecosystems at Risk
Publication
 
Author
 
Website
http://www.hear.org/pier/scientificnames/index.html
Publisher
 
Year
0
ISBN
 
Description
A very good website detailing weed species that have been introduced into the Pacific Islands.
].
The plant photosynthesizes by a more efficient method than most plants. Called the 'C4 carbon-fixation pathway', this process is particularly efficient at high temperatures, in bright sunlight and under dry conditions[
375
Title
Grassland Species - Profiles
Publication
 
Author
 
Website
http://www.fao.org/ag/AGP/AGPC/doc/Gbase/Default.htm
Publisher
 
Year
0
ISBN
 
Description
Terse information on over 650 species of plants that grow in grassland, including trees, shrubs and perennial plants as well as grasses. Gives a brief description of the plant, its range and habitat and some of its uses.
].

Edible Uses

Seed - cooked[
105
Title
Tanaka's Cyclopedia of Edible Plants of the World.
Publication
 
Author
Tanaka. T. & Nakao S.
Publisher
Keigaku Publishing; Tokyo
Year
1976
ISBN
-
Description
The most comprehensive list of edible plants I've come across. Only the briefest entry for each species, though, and some of the entries are more than a little dubious. Not for the casual reader.
,
177
Title
Plants for Human Consumption.
Publication
 
Author
Kunkel. G.
Publisher
Koeltz Scientific Books
Year
1984
ISBN
3874292169
Description
An excellent book for the dedicated. A comprehensive listing of Latin names with a brief list of edible parts.
]. It can be eaten as a sweet or savoury food in all the ways that rice is used, or ground into a powder and made into porridge, cakes, puddings etc[
183
Title
Cornucopia - A Source Book of Edible Plants.
Publication
 
Author
Facciola. S.
Publisher
Kampong Publications
Year
1990
ISBN
0-9628087-0-9
Description
Excellent. Contains a very wide range of conventional and unconventional food plants (including tropical) and where they can be obtained (mainly N. American nurseries but also research institutes and a lot of other nurseries from around the world.
]. The seed contains about 11.5% protein, 6% fat, 40.7% carbohydrate, 8.2% fat[
179
Title
Famine Foods listed in the Chiu-Huang Pen-ts'ao.
Publication
 
Author
Reid. B. E.
Publisher
Southern Materials Centre; Taipei
Year
1977
ISBN
-
Description
A translation of an ancient Chinese book on edible wild foods. Fascinating.
].

A dust from the fungal infection of plants is eaten[
2
Title
Sturtevant's Edible Plants of the World.
Publication
 
Author
Hedrick. U. P.
Publisher
Dover Publications
Year
1972
ISBN
0-486-20459-6
Description
Lots of entries, quite a lot of information in most entries and references.
,
172
Title
Discovering Wild Plants - Alaska, W. Canada and the Northwest.
Publication
 
Author
Schofield. J. J.
Publisher
 
Year
 
ISBN
 
Description
A nice guide to some useful plants in that area.
].

Medicinal

None known

Agroforestry Uses:

In some areas this grass plays an important role in stabilising bare soil to protect it from erosion[
375
Title
Grassland Species - Profiles
Publication
 
Author
 
Website
http://www.fao.org/ag/AGP/AGPC/doc/Gbase/Default.htm
Publisher
 
Year
0
ISBN
 
Description
Terse information on over 650 species of plants that grow in grassland, including trees, shrubs and perennial plants as well as grasses. Gives a brief description of the plant, its range and habitat and some of its uses.
].

Other Uses

The culms are twisted together and used as a rope to tie sheaves of grain together[
375
Title
Grassland Species - Profiles
Publication
 
Author
 
Website
http://www.fao.org/ag/AGP/AGPC/doc/Gbase/Default.htm
Publisher
 
Year
0
ISBN
 
Description
Terse information on over 650 species of plants that grow in grassland, including trees, shrubs and perennial plants as well as grasses. Gives a brief description of the plant, its range and habitat and some of its uses.
].

Propagation

Seed - sow in situ and only just cover the seed. Germination is usually quick and good.

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