Pearl millet, Pennisetum glaucum, is an annual grass in the family Poaceae which is grown widely in Africa and India for its grain which can be used to make flour and other foodstuffs. Pearl millet is a very robust grass which tillers widely and grows in tufts. It has slender stems which are divided into distinct nodes. The leaves of the plant are linear or lance-like, possess small teeth and can grow up to 1 m (3.3 ft) in length. The inflorescence of the plant is a spike-like panicle, made up of many smaller spikelets where the grain is produced. Pearl millet can reach 0.5 to 4 m (1.6–13.1 ft) in height depending on the cultivar and is an annual plant, harvested after one growing season. Pearl millet may also be referred to as bulrush millet, cat-tail millet or yellow bristle grass and originates from the Sahel zone of Africa.
Pearl millet grain can be ground into flour and used to produce porridge, or a type of flat bread. It can also be cooked and prepared in a manner similar to couscous or rice. The plant stems can be used for roof thatch and building construction. In countries other than Africa and India it is most widely grown as fodder.