Cenchrus macrourus (Trin.) Morrone
African Feather Grass

Reference
Ann.Bot. 106:128 (2010)
Conservation Code
Not threatened
Naturalised Status
Alien to Western Australia
Name Status
Current

Distribution

IBRA Regions
Jarrah Forest, Swan Coastal Plain, Warren.
IBRA Subregions
Northern Jarrah Forest, Perth, Southern Jarrah Forest, Warren.
Local Government Areas (LGAs)
Augusta Margaret River, Busselton, Capel, Gosnells, Kalamunda, Nannup, South Perth, Swan, Waroona.

Management Notes (for the Swan NRM Region)

Alternative Names. Beddingras.

General Biology. Growth form. Grass. Life form. Perennial, caespitose/rhizomatous. Reproduction. Seed, rhizomes, tillers. Dispersal. Water, wind, on animals, garden refuse, clothing, vehicles. Photosynthetic Pathway. C4. Seedbank persistence. Short, up to 1 year.

Notes. Occurs in riparian areas and pastures. Demonstrates preference for light sandy soils, full sun and low-lying areas over drier sites. Mature plants are drought resistant. Dense infestations provide cover for rabbits and create a fire hazard.

Additional information. Origin. South Africa, Yemen. History of use/introduction. Most likely first introduced to Australia in hay. Garden escape.

Suggested method of management and control. Dig out small infestations. Slash in winter and/or spray with 1% glyphosate + penetrant in spring to autumn. Follow up treatment until regrowth ceases. Follow-up seedling control. Use unplanned fire events to effectively control any regrowth. 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
Active Growth Y Y             Y Y Y Y  
Germination     U U U                
Flowering Y Y                   Y  
Optimum Treatment                 Y Y Y Y  

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

 

References

  • Blood, K. (2001) Environmental weeds: a field guide for SE Australia. C.H. Jerram and Associates, Melbourne.
  • Brown, K. & Brooks, K. (2002) Bushland Weeds: A Practical Guide to their Management. Environmental Weeds Action Network, Greenwood.
  • CRC Weed Management (2008) Weed Management Guide - Feathergrasses and mission grasses (Pennisetum species). CRC for Australian Weed Management, Canberra.
  • Faithfull, I., Matthews, J., Casterton, N.R.E., Bruzzese, E.I., McLaren, D. & Pritchard, G. (1998) Landcare notes. African feather grass. Keith Turnbull Research Institute, Frankston. URL: http://www.dpi.vic.gov.au/dpi/nreninf.nsf/Home+Page/DPI+InfoSeries~Home+Page?open - Accessed June 2002. Notes Series No. PP0027.
  • Harradine, A.R. (1980) The biology of African feather grass (Pennisetum macrourum Trin.) in Tasmania, I. Seedling establishment. Weed Research, 20: 165-169.
  • Harradine, A.R. (1980) The biology of African feather grass (Pennisetum macrourum Trin.) in Tasmania, II. Rhizome biology. Weed Research, 20: 171-175.
  • 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.
  • Moore, C.B. & Moore, J.H. (2002) Herbiguide, the pesticide expert on a disk. Herbiguide, PO Box 44 Albany, Western Australia, 6330.
  • Parsons, W.T. & Cuthbertson, E.G. (2001) Noxious weeds of Australia. 2nd Edition. CSIRO Publishing, Collingwood.