Panicum miliaceum subsp. ruderale (Kitag.) Tzvel. - Common Millet

Systematic position.

Family Poaceae, genus Panicum L.


Panicum miliaceum var. ruderale Kitag.

Biological group.

Annual weed.

Morphology and biology.

Stem is 20-100 cm tall, simple or branchy below, usually hairy; leaf plates and sheaths are also hairy. Inflorescence is panicle, up to 20 cm long, drooped, spreading or dense. Spikelets are one-floral, less often two-floral, ovoid, 3.5-4 mm long. Lower spikelet scale is longer than half the length of spikelet, with several ribs. Floral scales are shorter than upper spikelet scales, gristly, glabrous, shining. Caryopsides are 2-3 mm long, spherical or oval, dirty-yellow. Blossoming occurs in June-July, fructifying occurs in July-August.


All of the European part of the formet USSR, except for the Far North (as adventive plant), the Caucasus, Western and Eastern Siberia, the Far East. General distribution includes Western Europe, Anterior Asia, and (as adventive plant) Northern America.


It is a typical xerophyte, rather heat- and drought-resistant, having halobiontic forms. Habitats include damp meadows and pastures, lowland grassy bogs, oozy banks of rivers and lakes, fallow fields and abandoned lands rich in nitrogen, and damp garbage places.

Economic significance.

This ruderal-segetal weed strongly litters agricultural crops (winter and spring grain cultures, tilled crops, perennial grasses). It is dangerous among millet sowings grown for high-quality stock seeds. Control measures include qualitative maintenance of sowing favoring normal stem density, plowing to depths of 25 cm, tandem disk harrowing at sprouts.

Reference citations:

Gubanov I.A., Kiseleva K.V., Novikov V.S., Tikhomirov V.N. 2002. The illustrated keys to plants of Middle Russia. V. 1. Moscow: KMK. 526 p. (In Russian)
Krasavin V.D. 1989. Control of field-weed forms of millet. Vestnik sel.skokhozyaistvennoi nauki, 11: 154-155. (In Russian)
Shishkin B.K., ed. 1963. Botanical atlas. Moscow-Leningrad: Selkhozgiz. 504 p. (In Russian)
Vershinin Yu.A., Fadeeva E.F. 2002. Common Millet in crops of grain cultures. Zashchita i karantin rastenii, 2: 47. (In Russian)

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