Aegilops cylindrica Host - Cylindrical or jointed goatgrass.

Taxonomic position.

Family Poaceae Barnh. genus Aegilops L.


Triticum cylindricum (Host) Ces., Pass. & Gibelli; T. caudatum var. cylindricum (Host) Ach. & Graebner; Aegilops caudata subsp. cylindrica (Host) Hegi; A. var. cylindrica (Host) Fiori; Cylindropyrum cylindricum (Host) A. Love.

Morphology and biology.

Annual or biennial herbaceous plant. Stems are thin, numerous, in most cases erect, but may be geniculately curved (biennial forms). Leaves are linear, flat, sparsely pubescent or naked, but scabrous because of minor denticles along the veins. Ears are elongated, cylindrical and gradually converging at the top, 7-12 cm in length. Each ear consists of 6-11 spikelets and breaks off entirely or disintegrates into segments. There are 1-2 rudimentary spikelets at the base of the ear. The ear axis is flexible; spikelets are cylindrical, oblong in cross-section, with 3-4 flowers. Glumes are lanceolate, 6-9 mm long, with 7-9 thin veins, denticulated along the veins. Lateral spikelet glumes are bifurcate in the upper part, topped by a triangular denticle with a broad base and narrow point, often stretched into an awn-shaped appendage. Bidentate from above, the lemma is either longer than the glumes by 0.5-1.5 mm or equal to the glumes in length. Near the apical spikelet the lemma is, like the glumes, awn-shaped with 2 denticles at the sides. Kernels accrete to paleae.
This is a self-pollinating plant. Pollen grains are spherical, fine, and smooth. Blossoms in May; bears fruit in July. Autochore. Propagated by seed. 2n=28.


Eastern Europe (south), Crimea, Caucasus, Middle Asia (south coastal areas of Balkhash, Dzungarian Ala Tau, Tarbagatai, Tien Shan, Pamir-Alai, Kopet Dagh), Central Europe (south), Mediterranean region (east), Asia Minor, Iran. Endemic in many other extratropical countries.


Ephemeron. Winter-hardy. Drought-resistant. Salt-resistant. Grows on open slopes with stony and fine-grained soils, sands and gravels, near roads and on weedy sites, sometimes in weeded meadows and steppes; from the plains to the middle mountain zone, within the limits of 100-2000 m above sea level.

Utilization and economic value.

The plant is consumed well by all kinds of livestock before the fruiting phase. Yields high-quality hay. May be used by wheat breeders in hybridization with wheat varieties.


Boguslavsky, R.L. 1980. Flowering, pollination and spontaneous hybridization in the genus Aegilops L. Synopsis of Ph.D. thesis. Leningrad, VIR, 23 pp. (in Russian).
Eig, A. 1929. Monographisch-kritische Ubersicht der Gattung Aegilops. Feddes Repertorium Specierum novarum regni vegetabilis Beih, 55:1-228. (in Germany)
Gandilyan, P.A. 1978. Toward the taxonomy of the genus Aegilops L. and the classifier of its species. Biological Journal of Armenia, vol. 31, iss.3, pp. 223-232 (in Russian).
Slageren, M. W. van. 1994. Wild wheats: a monograph of Aegilops L. and Amblyopyrum (Jaub. & Spach) Eig (Poaceae). Wageningen Agriculture University Papers 1994 (7). 513 pp.
Sorokina, O.N. 1928. Concerning chromoses in gen. Aegilops L.Works on Applied Botany, Genetics and Plant Breeding, series 2, pp. 524-529 (in Russian).
Tsvelev, N.N. 1976. Cereal grasses of the USSR. Leningrad, Nauka, 788 pp. (in Russian).
Zhukovsky, P.M. 1928. Critique and taxonomic survey of Aegilops L. species. Works on Applied Botany, Genetics and Plant Breeding, vol.18, iss.1, pp. 417-609 (in Russian).

© I.G. Chukhina, D.G. Antonov


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