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Biology Of Grasses, Native Grasses Of North America, Grasses In Agriculture, Wheats, Maize Or Corn

Grasses are monocotyledonous plants in the family Poaceae (also known as Gramineae). There are as many as 10,000 species of grasses distributed among more than 600 genera. The richest genera of grasses are the panic-grasses (Panicum spp.) with 400 species, the bluegrasses (Poa spp.) and love-grasses (Eragrostis spp.) with 300 species each, and the needle-grasses (Stipa spp.) with 200 species.

Species of grasses occur worldwide in virtually any habitats that are capable of supporting vascular plants. Grasses are the dominant species in some types of natural vegetation such as prairies and steppes, and they are an important source of forage for many species of herbivorous animals. Some species of grasses are grown as agricultural crops, and these are among the most important foods for humans and domestic livestock. The most important of the agricultural grasses are maize, wheat, rice, sorghum, barley, and sugar cane.

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Science EncyclopediaScience & Philosophy: Glucagon to Habitat