Culm (botany)

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A tuft of sugarcane with red, thick stems
Culms of sugarcane
Use for building roofs in Ethiopia

A culm is the aerial (above-ground) stem of a grass or sedge. It is derived from Latin culmus, meaning "stalk." It originally referred to the stem of any type of plant.[1]

In horticulture or agriculture, it is especially used to describe the stalk or woody stems of bamboo, cane or grain grasses.


In the production of malted grains, the culms refer to the rootlets of the germinated grains. The culms are normally removed in a process known as "deculming" after kilning when producing barley malt, but form an important part of the product when making sorghum or millet malt. These culms are very nutritious and are sold off as animal feed.[2]


  1. ^ MacGillavray, William A Manual of Botany London 1840. p. 36.
  2. ^ "Malt culms, malt sprouts, malt coombs". Animal Feed Resources Information System. Archived from the original on December 29, 2012. Retrieved December 7, 2012.