Digitaria insularis

Digitaria insularis (L.) Mez ex. Ekman

Synonym: Trichachne insularis

Common Names: Sour Grass

Family: Poaceae

Habit: Digitaria insularis grows as clumping perennial to 150 cm in height when flowering. The leaves are arranged alternately to 20 cm in length (usually shorter) with a pubescent basal sheath extending along the stem. At the point of divergence of the leaf sheath to the leaf blade is a small membranous ligule. The leaves are parallel veined.

The zygomorphic flowers are arranged in a panicle made of appressed spikelets. The rachis is triangular and winged. At the base of each spikelet are 2 yellow brown, ciliate structures called glumes. The first glume extremely small and the second large and covered with long pubescence. In each spikelet there are flowering structures each is subtended by 2 additional ciliate edged structures (lemma and palea).  The lemma is long pubescent. There are two florets with the lower one sterile and the upper fertile with 1 stamen and a superior ovary each with a single locule and seed.  The fruit is a caryopsis.

Habitat: Digitaria insularis grows in Human Altered environments (yards, old fields).

Distribution: Digitaria insularis occurs throughout the islands groupings in the Lucayan Archipelago, the Caribbean, and North, Central, and South America.

Medicinal/Cultural/Economic usage: Digitaria insularis is not known to be used medicinally in the Lucayan Archipelago.