Chilean needle grass
Vascular – Exotic
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.
Erect, tussocky, tufted perennial grass to 1 m tall (prostrate with dense horizontal tillers where heavily grazed). Stem base swollen. Leaves yellowish-green, 400 x 1-5 mm (rolled when in drought),margins rough and bristly. Leaf collar has tufts of erect hairs on both sides. Ligule short, membranous. Seedheads of 2 types: large, drooping, open, harsh, purplish, turning silver; and small, hidden in leaf sheaths (appear as swellings in stem above node). Seed 8-10 mm long, narrow, bristly, sharply pointed, with 60-80 mm twisted hair-like awn, Nov-Dec.
Schedonorous phoenix is siliar in growth but N. neesiana has narrower leaves and the spear-like attachment on the seed is distinctive.
Reason For Introduction
Life Cycle Comments
Perennial. seeds are >90% viable and survive for several years in the soil and germinate in autumn and spring.
Restricted distribution due to a lack of wind dispersal; localised spread occurs through seed being transported by stock, in hay, on clothing, by machinery and in water.