Cynodon dactylon (L.) Pers. Couch
Syn.Pl. 1:85 (1805)

Conservation Code: Not threatened
Naturalised Status: Alien to Western Australia
Name Status: Current

Brief Description
Grazyna Paczkowska, Wednesday 3 November 1993

Rhizomatous (or stoloniferous), prostrate perennial, grass-like or herb, 0.05-0.3 m high. Fl. green-purple, Jun to Nov or Feb. Sand, loam, clay.

Distribution

Beard’s Provinces: Eremaean Province, Northern Province, South-West Province.

IBRA Regions: Avon Wheatbelt, Carnarvon, Central Kimberley, Central Ranges, Coolgardie, Dampierland, Esperance Plains, Geraldton Sandplains, Jarrah Forest, Mallee, Murchison, Northern Kimberley, Ord Victoria Plain, Pilbara, Swan Coastal Plain, Victoria Bonaparte, Warren.

IBRA Subregions: Avon Wheatbelt P1, Avon Wheatbelt P2, Berkeley, Cape Range, Chichester, Eastern Mallee, Eastern Murchison, Fitzgerald, Fitzroy Trough, Fortescue, Geraldton Hills, Hamersley, Hart, Mann-Musgrave Block, Mardabilla, Mitchell, Mount Eliza, Northern Jarrah Forest, Ord, Ord-Victoria Plains P1, Pentecost, Perth, Pindanland, Roebourne, Southern Jarrah Forest, Victoria Bonaparte P1, Warren, Western Mallee, Wooramel.

IMCRA Regions: Abrolhos Islands, Canning, Central West Coast, Leeuwin-Naturaliste, Shark Bay.

Local Government Areas (LGAs): Ashburton, Bayswater, Bridgetown-Greenbushes, Broome, Busselton, Carnarvon, Claremont, Cockburn, Cocos Islands, Cunderdin, Dandaragan, Denmark, Derby-West Kimberley, Dundas, East Pilbara, Esperance, Gingin, Gosnells, Greater Geraldton, Halls Creek, Harvey, Joondalup, Karratha, Lake Grace, Mandurah, Manjimup, Mingenew, Moora, Morawa, Mundaring, Murray, Ngaanyatjarraku, Northam, Northampton, Perth, Plantagenet, Rockingham, Serpentine-Jarrahdale, Shark Bay, Stirling, Swan, Upper Gascoyne, Wandering, Wanneroo, Wiluna, Wyndham-East Kimberley, York.

Management Notes (for the Swan NRM Region)
Kate Brown and Karen Bettink, Thursday 21 December 2017

Alternative Names. Bermuda grass.

General Biology. Growth form. Grass. Life form. Perennial, stoloniferous/rhizomatous. Reproduction. Seed, rhizomes, stolons. Dispersal. Water, ants, wind, slashing, garden refuse, deliberate planting. Photosynthetic Pathway. C4. Toxicity. Can be toxic to animals due production of cyanogenic compounds. Seedbank persistence. 3-4 years. Fire response. Survives most fire, reshoots from rhizomes.

Notes. Inhabits open sites subject to frequent disturbances such as grazing, flooding and fire. Prefers fertile sandy to silty soils or alluvium. Favours moist and warm climates. Shade reduces vigor. Known host of pathogens and pests. Documented as allelopathic, capable of reducing the germination and growth of other species. Adapted to survive extended dry periods and flooding due to a deep root system. Generally tolerant of low soil pH and high salt concentration, however is susceptible to cold temperatures. Growth slows in cold weather, in shade and/or dry soils. A number of variants and cultivars have been developed worldwide, mainly to increase drought resistance, cold hardiness, disease resistance and forage production. Rhizomes shoot at 10 degrees celsius, but shooting can occur at 30-40 degrees celsius. Rhizomes are resistant to drought and waterlogging, and sensitive to light.

Additional information. Origin. Africa, southern Europe. History of use/introduction. Turf, pasture. Similar native species. Sporobolus virginicus.

Suggested method of management and control. Small infestations may be dug out, ensuring removal of all rhizomes and stolons, however it is difficult to eradicate without herbicides. Spray Fusilade® Forte at 13 ml/L + wetting agent or for generic fluazifop-p (212g/L active ingredient) 8mL/L + wetting agent when plants are small and beginning new growth, or 1% glyphosate in late spring/summer and autumn when rhizomes are actively growing. In sensitive areas try painting runners or crowns with 50% glyphosate. Follow-up is nearly always required. Treatment is particularly effective after fire. Read the manufacturers' labels and material safety data sheets before using herbicides. For further information consult the Australian Pesticides and Veterinary Medicines Authority to determine the status of permits for your situation or state.

Management Calendar

Calendar Type Jan Feb Mar Apr May Jun Jul Aug Sep Oct Nov Dec Comments
Dormant           Y Y Y         Growth slows
Active Growth Y Y Y Y Y         Y Y Y  
Flowering Y Y                   Y  
Optimum Treatment Y Y O O             Y Y  

Legend: Y = Yes, regularly, O = Occasionally, U = Uncertain, referred by others but not confirmed.

 

References

  • Bedmar, F. (1992) Evaluation of postemergence grass herbicides against Cynodon dactylon in sunflower. Annals of Applied Biology, 120 (Supp): 58-59.
  • Brown, K. & Brooks, K. (2002) Bushland Weeds: A Practical Guide to their Management. Environmental Weeds Action Network, Greenwood.
  • California Department of Food and Agriculture (2001) Encycloweedia: The noxious weeds data sheets. URL: http://www.cdfa.ca.gov/phpps/ipc/encycloweedia/encycloweedia_hp.htm - Accessed December 2007.
  • Carey, J.H. (1995) Cynodon dactylon. In: Fire Effects Information System. U.S. Department of Agriculture, Forest Service, Rocky Mountain Research Station, Fire Sciences Laboratory URL: http://www.fs.fed.us/database/feis/ - Accessed November 2009.
  • Foy, C.L. & Inderjit (2001) Understanding the role of allelopathy in weed interference and declining plant diversity. Weed Technology, 15 (4): 873-878.
  • Harp, D.A., Kee, D., Herschler, K., Ong, K. & Sloan, J. (2008) Compost type affects Bermudagrass (Cynodon dactylon (L.) Pers.) invasion. The Texas Journal of Agriculture and Natural Resource, 21: 82-88.
  • Hussey, B.M.J., Keighery, G.J., Dodd, J., Lloyd, S.G. & Cousens, R.D. (2007) Western Weeds. A guide to the weeds of Western Australia. 2nd Edition. The Plant Protection Society of Western Australia, Victoria Park.
  • IUCN SSC Invasive Species Specialist Group (ISSG) (2005) Cynodon dactylon (grass). URL: http://www.issg.org/database/species/ecology.asp?si=202&fr=1&sts=sss - Accessed October 2009.
  • JianYing, S. (1995) Studies on biological characteristics and control of Cynodon dactylon. Journal of Shanghai Agricultural College, 13 (3): 187-192.
  • Moore, C.B. & Moore, J.H. (2002) Herbiguide, the pesticide expert on a disk. Herbiguide, PO Box 44 Albany, Western Australia, 6330.
  • Muyt, A. (2001) Bush invaders of South-East Australia: A guide to the identification and control of environmental weeds found in South-East Australia. R.G. & F.J. Richardson, Melbourne.
  • Pacific Island Ecosystems at Risk (2008) Plant threats to Pacific ecosystems. URL: http://www.hear.org/pier/scinames.htm - Accessed January 2010.
  • Pacific Island Ecosystems at Risk (PIER) (2009) Cynodon dactylon (L.) Pers., Poaceae. URL: http://www.hear.org/Pier/species/cynodon_dactylon.htm - Accessed October 2009.
  • Rezaie, F. (2009) Allelopathic effects of Chenopodium album, Amaranthus retroflexus and Cynodon dactylon on germination and growth of safflower. Journal of Food and Agriculture & Environment, 7 (2): 516-521.
  • USDA, ARS, National Genetic Resources Program (2009) Germplasm Resources Information Network - (GRIN). National Germplasm Resources Laboratory, Beltsville, Maryland. URL: https://npgsweb.ars-grin.gov/gringlobal/taxon/taxonomysimple.aspx - Accessed October 2009.

Project information and acknowledgements