common name for any plant of the genus Bromus,
chiefly large, coarse grasses of a weedy nature; some, however, are useful as forage, and others are cultivated for decoration. Some of the better-known bromes are the smooth brome (B. inermis,
sometimes called awnless, or Hungarian, brome), often cultivated for pasture or for holding banks; rescue grass (B. catharticus
or B. unioloides
), a forage in the Southern states; and chess, or cheat (B. secalinus
), a pest of grainfields, formerly believed by some to be degenerate wheat. Many species of brome grasses develop sharp-barbed fruits at maturity that are injurious to stock (whence the name ripgut grass for some); before maturity these are often used for forage. Brome grasses are classified in the division Magnoliophyta
, class Liliopsida, order Cyperales, family Gramineae.
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