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a genus of annual and perennial plants of the grass family. Single-flower monoecious spikes form an apical inflorescence, usually a branching one. Since Aristida has roots which grow deep into the soil, it grows well in sandy or rocky places in arid zones. There are more than 300 species distributed in all the hot and arid regions of the earth. In the USSR there are five species, primarily in Middle Asia and the Caucasus. Aristida pennata (selin), Aristada plumosa, and others are used for stabilization of sands and for fodder.