Gymnostichum gracile Hook.f.; Hystrix gracilis (Hook.f.) Kuntze; Asprella gracilis (Hook.f.) Kirk; Cockaynae gracilis (Hook.f.) Zotov; Stenostachys narduroides Turcz.; Elymus narduroides (Turcz.) Á.Löve et Connor; Agropyron subeglume P.Candargy
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 = 28
Current conservation status
The threat classification 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. Authors: By 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. Please note, threat classifications are often suggested by authors when publications fall between NZTCS assessment periods – a suggested threat classification status has not been assessed by the NZTCS panel.
2017 | Not Threatened | Qualifiers: DP
Previous conservation statuses
2012 | Not Threatened
2009 | Data Deficient
2004 | Not Threatened
Endemic. North, South and Stewart Islands. Uncommon north of the Central Volcanic Plateau
Coastal to montane (0-1000 m a.s.l.). In estuarine habitats, at gully and valley heads, on clay banks and along stream sides in tall forest. Also in shrublands. occasionally found in tussock grassland.
Perennial, stoloniferous, green, glaucous or yellow-green grass forming open to densely tufted, wide somewhat flat-leaved patches with long nodding inflorescences; often very stout in forested areas. Leaf-sheath 50-150 mm, with long (0.5-1.0 mm) hairs irregularly retrorse or erect, occasionally glabrate or glabrous. Auricles to 0.5 mm or minute, scarcely clasping. Ligule 0.3-1.0 mm, erose. Leaf-blade 100-200 x 1.5-2.0 mm, flat, thin, usually with hairs 0.5-1.0 mm or bearing sparse prickle-teeth above and glabrous below; margins glabrous. Culm 0.7-1.2 m long, slender, nodes evident sometimes ± geniculate, internodes glabrous. Inflorescence slender, narrow 100-300 mm, glaucous or somewhat powdery greyish white, comprised of 15-40 spikelets > internodes; internodes 2-5 mm but longer at base; rachis prolongation 2-6 mm. Spikelets to 10 mm, of 1-3 forests, on 1.0-1.5 mm stipes in the absence of glumes; rachilla prolongation 1.5-3.0 mm, conspicuously short stiffly hairy. Glumes 0, sometimes 1-2 and awn-like, 0-3 mm, very rarely 5-6 mm above, 1-nerved, prickle-toothed, much less than spikelets in length. Lemma 7-10 mm, prickle-teeth abundant, weakly keeled, infrequently bifid at apex, canaliculated above, tapering to awn 1.5-6.0 mm. Palea 5-7 mm, < lemma, apex usually prolonged or retuse; keels toothed and usually inrolled, Callus short, 0.5 mm, surrounded by abundant short stiff hairs; disarticulation ± oblique. Rachilla 1.5-2.5 mm, shortly prickle-toothed. Lodicules 0.75-1.00 mm. Anthers 1.5-2.0 mm, often retained as a remnant surmounting the seed apex. Ovary 1.25-1.40 mm; stigma-styles 1.5-2.0 mm. Seed 4.00-4.25 mm. Flowers mostly cleistogamous.
Distinguished from S. deceptorix Connor and S. laevis (Petrie) Connor by the mixtures of minute, absent or awn-like glumes in the inflorescence (rather than solely awn-like), and by the lemma which is conspicuously prickle-toothed rather than mostly smooth or sparingly prickel-toothed.
September - January
November - May
Easily grown from fresh seed and rooted pieces. Prefers a semi-shaded site, planted in damp soil. Very attractive when in flower and fruit.
Not Threatened. However, scarce north of the Bay of Plenty and Waikato.
Where To Buy
Not commercially available.
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 pp.