A forb (sometimes spelled phorb) is a herbaceous flowering plant that is not a graminoid (grasses, sedges and rushes). The term is used in biology and in vegetation ecology, especially in relation to grasslands and understory.
"Forb" is derived from the Greek Φορβη (phorbe), "pasture" or "fodder". The spelling "phorb" is sometimes used, and in older usage this sometimes includes graminids and other plants currently not regarded as forbs.
Forbs and guilds
Forbs are members of guilds of plant species with broadly similar growth form. In certain contexts in ecology guild membership often may be more important than the taxonomic relationships between organisms.
Forbs in informal classification
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