Steinchisma hians

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Steinchisma hians
Steinchisma hians SEF.jpg
Photo by John Gwaltney hosted at Southeastern
Scientific classification
Kingdom: Plantae
Division: Magnoliophyta - Flowering plants
Class: Liliopsida - Moncots
Order: Poales
Family: Poaceae
Genus: Steinchisma
Species: S. hians
Binomial name
Steinchisma hians
(Elliott) Nash
Natural range of Steinchisma hians from USDA NRCS Plants Database.

Common Name(s): gaping panic grass;[1] gaping grass[2]

Taxonomic Notes

Synonym(s): Panicum hians Elliott.[3]


Steinchisma hians" is a monoecious perennial graminoid.[2]


S. hians is found from southeastern Virginia, south to Florida, west to Texas and Oklahoma, and south through Mexico and central America to Colombia. It is also found in southern South America.[1]



This species is found along the shores of streams, ponds, and lakes, as well as in low woods, cypress-gum ponds, floodplains, marshes, ditches, pine plantations, and seepage slopes.[1][4] It is also found in disturbed areas including roadside depressions and railroad embankments.[4]

S. hians increased its occurrence in response to soil disturbance by roller chopping in south Florida. It has shown regrowth in reestablished habitat that was disturbed by this practice.[5]

Associated species include Stillin gia, Lachnocaulon, Sarracenia minor, Juncus dichotomous, and Eryngium yuccifolium.[4]


Flowering occurs from May through October.[1]

Fire ecology

Populations of Steinchisma hians have been known to persist through repeated annual burning.[6]

Herbivory and toxicology

This grass is considered one of the top forage grasses in Louisiana woodlands.[7]

Conservation, cultivation, and restoration

Cultural use

Photo Gallery

References and notes

  1. 1.0 1.1 1.2 1.3 Weakley AS (2015) Flora of the Southern and Mid-Atlantic States. Chapel Hill, NC: University of North Carolina Herbarium.
  2. 2.0 2.1 USDA NRCS (2016) The PLANTS Database (, 16 January 2018). National Plant Data Team, Greensboro, NC 27401-4901 USA.
  3. Weakley, A.S. 2015. Flora of the southern and mid-atlantic states. Working Draf of 21 May 2015. University of North Carolina at Chapel Hill, Chapel Hill, North Carolina.
  4. 4.0 4.1 4.2 Florida State University Herbarium Database. URL: Last accessed: June 2021. Collectors: Loran C. Anderson, S. T. Cooper, A. H. Curtiss, R.K. Godfrey, and D. L. Martin. States and counties: Florida: Gadsden, Jackson, Jupiter, Leon, and Union.
  5. Lewis, C.E. (1970). Responses to Chopping and Rock Phosphate on South Florida Ranges. Journal of Range Management 23(4):276-282.
  6. Platt, W.J., R. Carter, G. Nelson, W. Baker, S. Hermann, J. Kane, L. Anderson, M. Smith, K. Robertson. 2021. Unpublished species list of Wade Tract old-growth longleaf pine savanna, Thomasville, Georgia.
  7. Shiflet TN (1963) A conservation program for grazing woodlands in the southeast. Journal of Range Management 16(1):18-21.