Leptochloa chinensis (L.) Nees
Poa chinensis L. (basionym), P. chinensis Burm. f., P. malabarica Retz., P. sinensis J. F. Gmel.
Asia: Japan and Korea.
South and Southeast Asia: Bangladesh, Cambodia, India, Indonesia, Lao PDR, Malaysia, Myanmar, Pakistan, Philippines, Sri Lanka, Thailand, and Vietnam.
Rest of the world: Australia, Papua New Guinea, Swaziland, and West Africa.
A tufted and smooth annual or perennial; up to 120 cm tall.
Stem: slender, hollow, erect or ascending from a branching base, rooting at lower nodes, smooth and without hair, typically 10−20 nodes, and can reach as high as 50−100 cm.
Leaf: smooth, linear, 10−30 cm long; ligule an inconspicuous membrane 1−2 mm long and deeply divided into hairlike segments.
Inflorescence: narrowly ovate, loose panicle, main axis 10−40 cm long, and with many spike-like slender branches; racemes slender, each with two rows of spikelets, spikelets 2−3.2 mm long, purplish or green and 4−6 flowered.
Biology and ecology
Red sprangletop propagates by seeds or vegetatively by rootstocks. Germination does not occur when seeds are submerged in water.
Leptochola chinensis is a serious weed of rice. Its ability to withstand waterlogged conditions as well as drained, moist conditions makes it a problem weed in rice.
The weed is an alternate host of Cicadulina bipunctata (Melichar), Cnaphalocrocis medinalis (Guenee), Creatonotus gangis Linnaeus, Marasmia spp., Nephotettix spp., Peregrinus maidis (Ashmead), Pseudococcus saccharicola Takahashi, Spodoptera mauritia acronyctoides (Guenee), and nematodes such as Hirschmanniella sp. and Meloidogyne sp. It is also an alternate host of diseases caused by Ephelis oryzae, Pyricularia oryzae, and Rhizoctonia solani.
Leptochola chinensis is used as feed for animals. Its grains serve as a famine food in East Africa.
Cultural control: rotovating and puddling of rice fields during land preparation; hand weeding can be effective during the early growth stages of the weed.
Chemical control: Quinclorac, propanil, pendimethalin, fenoxaprop, pretilachlor, or benthiocarb.
JLA Catindig, RT Lubigan, and D Johnson