Plant Listings

Uniola paniculata

Uniola paniculata L.

Common Names: Sea Oats

Family: Poaceae

Habit: Uniola paniculata grows as a rhizomatous perennial forming large colonies and up to 1.5 meters in height with a diameter to 1 cm. The leaves are arranged alternately with a sheath extending along the stem that is pubescent along its edge. At the point of divergence of the leaf sheath to the leaf blade is a small ligule. The leaves are parallel veined.

The zygomorphic flowers are arranged in terminal panicles that are up to 2 meters in height. The flowers are highly modified without identifiable structures such as the calyx or corolla. Each flowering unit is a laterally compressed spikelet at the base of which are 2 yellow brown structures called glumes. In each spikelet there are 10-20 flowering structures each is subtended by 2 additional structures (lemma and palea). The lower flowers are sterile and the upper fertile and have 3 unfused stamens and a superior ovary each with a single locule and seed. The fruit is a caryopsis.

Habitat: Uniola paniculata grows in Dunes.

Distribution in Bahamas/Globally: Uniola paniculata occurs on all island groupings within the Bahamian Archipelago as well as the entire Caribbean region and North, Central, and South America.

Medicinal/Cultural/Economic usage: Uniola paniculata is not know to be used medicinally in the Bahamas.