Banks Peninsula fescue
Festuca ovina subsp. matthewsii var. grandiflora Howarth; Festuca novae-zelandicae var. grandiflora (Howarth) St.-Yves; Festuca ovina subsp. novae-zelandiae var grandiflora Howarth; Festuca ovina subsp. matthewsii var. eu-matthewsii Howarth; Festuca petriei forma tenuifolia Howarth
Vascular – Native
The National Vegetation Survey (NVS) Databank is a physical archive and electronic databank containing records of over 94,000 vegetation survey plots - including data from over 19,000 permanent plots. NVS maintains a standard set of species code abbreviations that correspond to standard scientific plant names from the Ngä Tipu o Aotearoa - New Zealand Plants database.
2n = 42
Current conservation status
The conservation status of all known New Zealand vascular plant taxa at the rank of species and below were reassessed in 2017 using the New Zealand Threat Classification System (NZTCS) – more information about this can be found on the NZTCS website. This report includes a statistical summary and brief notes on changes since 2012 and replaces all previous NZTCS lists for vascular plants.
Please note, threat classifications are often suggested by authors when publications fall between NZTCS assessment periods – an interim threat classification status has not been assessed by the NZTCS panel.
- Conservation status of New Zealand indigenous vascular plants, 2017 . 2018. Peter J. de Lange, Jeremy R. Rolfe, John W. Barkla, Shannel P. Courtney, Paul D. Champion, Leon R. Perrie, Sarah M. Beadel, Kerry A. Ford, Ilse Breitwieser, Ines Schönberger, Rowan Hindmarsh-Walls, Peter B. Heenan and Kate Ladley. Department of Conservation. Source: NZTCS and licensed by DOC for reuse under the Creative Commons Attribution 4.0 International licence.
2017 | At Risk – Naturally Uncommon | Qualifiers: OL
Previous conservation statuses
2012 | At Risk – Naturally Uncommon | Qualifiers: OL
2009 | At Risk – Naturally Uncommon
2004 | Range Restricted
Endemic. New Zealand: South Island (Banks Peninsula).
Coastal to montane. On rocks, rock outcrops, bluffs, talus and stabilised, sparsely vegetated slopes
Slender tussock with intravaginal branches, with fine and long glaucous leaf-blades. Leaf-sheath 50–100 mm, stramineous occasionally reddened, glabrous, striate, margins becoming membranous; apical auricles 0.4–0.7 mm, truncate or rounded, ciliate. Ligule as for auricles. Collar 0.6–1.7 mm, manifestly thickened, usually becoming brown coloured, adaxially with many small white hairs. Leaf-blade 200-600 × 0.4-0.7 mm, terete or hexagonal and ribbed, glaucous, glabrous except for prickle-teeth at pointed apex, disarticulating at collar, adaxially and on margin a multitude of small (0.10–0.15 mm) white hairs. Culm 250–600 mm, erect or geniculate at base, nodes 2–3 evident, internodes glabrous. Panicle 50–250, with 7–9 nodes of 10–30 spikelets; basal branches 40–50 mm, binate, lax, of 2–6 spikelets and naked below, soon becoming single ascending branches, uppermost 3–5 spikelets solitary on pedicels; rachis glabrous or sparsely prickle-toothed below becoming more so, branches and pedicels prickle-toothed. Spikelets 10–17 × 6 mm, of 4–12 florets. Glumes unequal, keeled, prickle-teeth on keel and at apex, variously elsewhere, usually green centrally lighter at margins, sometimes purpled, margin ciliate; lower 3.0–4.5 mm, 1-nerved, long triangular acute, upper 4.5–7.5 mm, 3-nerved occasionally 5-nerved, narrowly ovate, acute to obtuse. Lemma 6–9 mm, rounded, lobes small (0.1–0.2 mm), glaucous, prickle-teeth from outer nerve to ciliate margin, scattered elsewhere, denser near awn; awn 0.1–2.5 mm. Palea 6–8 mm, sometimes > lemma, deeply bifid, keels toothed to base or nearly so, flanks and interkeel hairy above. Callus 0.2–0.5 mm, margin very short stiff hairy; articulation flat. Rachilla 1.0–1.5 mm, very shortly antrorsely stiff hairy. Lodicules 0.7–1.5 mm, lobed or entire, hair-tipped. Anthers 3.5–4.4 mm, yellow. Ovary 0.5–1.0 mm, hispid hairs at apex (in 2 lateral groups or occasionally surrounding apex); stigma-styles 1.4–2.8 mm. Seed 3–4.8 mm.
Manaaki Whenua Online Interactive Key
Florets are dispersed by wind, water and attachment (Thorsen et al., 2009).
Easily grown from fresh seed and rooted pieces. An attractive grass tolerant of most conditions but dislikes humidity.
Range Restricted—a Banks Peninsula endemic that is widespread and not threatened.
festuca: From the Latin festuca ‘stem’ or ‘blade of grass’
Commonly sold as Festuca cv. Banks Peninsula.
Description modified from Edgar and Connor (2000).
References and further reading
Edgar, E.; Connor, H.E. 2000: Flora of New Zealand. Vol. V. Grasses. Christchurch, Manaaki Whenua Press. 650 p.
Thorsen, M. J.; Dickinson, K. J. M.; Seddon, P. J. 2009. Seed dispersal systems in the New Zealand flora. Perspectives in Plant Ecology, Evolution and Systematics 11: 285–309.