For other senses of this term, see Speech transmission index, Luigi Stipa, Stipa-Caproni
Green needle grass,
Stipa viridula
Scientific classification
Kingdom: Plantae
(unranked): Angiosperms
(unranked): Monocots
(unranked): Commelinids
Order: Poales
Family: Poaceae
Subfamily: Pooideae
Tribe: Stipeae
Genus: Stipa

Some 300, see text.


Lasiagrostis Link
Orthoraphium Nees
Patis Ohwi
Sparteum P.Beauv., nom. inval.
Stupa Asch., orth. var.
Timouria Roshev.
Trichosantha Steud., nom. inval.[1]

Stipa is a genus of around 300 large perennial hermaphroditic grasses collectively known as feather grass, needle grass, and spear grass. They are placed in the subfamily Pooideae and the tribe Stipeae.

Many species are important forage crops. Several species such as Stipa brachytricha, S. arundinacea, S. splendens, S. calamagrostis, S. gigantea and S. pulchra are used as ornamental plants. One species, esparto grass (Stipa tenacissima), is used for crafts and extensively in paper making.


Species of the genus Stipa can occur in grasslands[2] or in savanna habitats. Certain specific prairie plant associations are dominated by grasses of the genus Stipa, which genus often lends its name to the terminology of some prairie types.[3] In some areas of the western United States grasses of the genus Stipa form a significant part of the understory of Blue Oak savannas, and were even a more important element prehistorically before the invasion of many European grasses.[4]

Selected species

Formerly placed here

See also


Wikispecies has information related to: Stipa
Wikimedia Commons has media related to Stipa.

Line notes

  1. 1 2 "Genus: Stipa L.". Germplasm Resources Information Network. United States Department of Agriculture. 1998-09-14. Retrieved 2011-06-27.
  2. Elgaily Osman Ahmed, 1983
  3. Ecological Society of America, 1921
    • C. Michael Hogan, 2008
  4. 1 2 "GRIN Species Records of Stipa". Germplasm Resources Information Network. United States Department of Agriculture. Retrieved 2011-06-27.
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