In a survey of soil and wheat or maize rhizoplane bacteria isolated using a medium containing azelaic acid and tryptamine as sole carbon and nitrogen sources, respectively, a large proportion of Burkholderia-like bacteria were found. Among them, a homogeneous group of strains was identifiable based on phenotypic properties, fatty acid composition, DNA-DNA hybridizations and 16S rDNA sequences. According to molecular data, this group belongs to the genus Burkholderia but its weak similarity to previously described species suggests that it belongs to a novel species. Closest 16S rDNA phylogenetic neighbours of this species are Burkholderia caryophylli and two previously named Pseudomonas species which clearly appear to be part of the Burkholderia genus and were thus named Burkholderia glathei comb. nov. and Burkholderia phenazinium comb. nov. Strains of the new species are oxidase- and catalase-positive, produce indole and gelatinase, and use L-xylose, lactose, rhamnose, trehalose, D-lyxose, L-arabitol, xylitol and D-raffinose as sole carbon source. This novel taxon is named Burkholderia graminis. In the course of this study, [Pseudomonas] pyrrocinia also proved to be a member of the Burkholderia genus.