Friday, March 12, 2010

Slender Bamboo Grass

Austrostipa verticillata
This is such a pretty grass, and is flowering beautifully in many sites on both red and black soil on the eastern Darling Downs at present.
It is the smallest of the three local bamboo grasses, rarely reaching waist-height. Its large, delicate-looking pink-green flowerheads make a beautiful show in November.
It is an adaptable plant which will grow on light soils and clay, and is hardy to frost and drought, and grows in full sun or dappled shade.
All the Austrostipa species are clumping grasses which make good wildlife habitat. Because of their beauty, they are all used by professional landscape gardeners.
They make very good wildlife habitat, and their seeds are appreciated by birds and insects.
Once established, patches become self-maintaining. The seeds are “self-planting” having awns (the little whiskers on their ends) which twist more or less according to the humidity, and, with a little help from the wind, make the seeds burrow into the ground.
They are unlikely ever to be weedy, as they are shallow-rooted, easy to uproot by hand. They are also easily killed by lawnmowing, so are easy to confine to their designated garden plot.

No comments: