Grasses Weed profiles & Native alternatives
I’M A WEED
Shortly rhizomatous, tussock perennial rush to 1.6 m high. Flowering stems and stem-like leaves arise from the base at varying angles giving the whole plant a characteristic spherical shape. Distinguished by pith-filled stems and leaves. Leaves similar to flower stems and terminate in a stiff sharp point (hence the scientific name”acutus”). Fruit is an ovoid 3-celled brown capsule.
Seeds 0.1-0.2 cm long, brown with a tail at each end. Flowering stems 0.2-0.4 cm wide. Flower heads 4-13 cm long, consisting of clusters of 1-6 flowers, throughout year, but mostly spring and summer.
Threat / Problem
• Invades lowland grassland and grassy woodland, riparian vegetation, freshwater and saline wetlands forming dense stands, displacing and inhibiting recruitment of native sedges, herbs and shrubs. Has sharp, dangerous spines.
• Grows from seed, mainly spread through movement of seedcontaminated mud attached to vehicles and animals.
• Hand pull or spot spray, best in late spring or after fire.
• Seek specialist advice when using herbicide in or near aquatic environments.
Note: Can be confused with native rushes. Spiny Rush has more pointed tips than native rushes, painful to touch.
GROW ME INSTEAD
Perennial rush (grass-like) to 1 m high. Stems are 0.2-0.4 cm in diameter, with a continuous pith, rigid, cylindrical. Leaves are few, almost as long as stems, with sharp tips. Flower head is loose and interrupted, or dense, 5-12 cm long with dark-brown flowers in small few-flowered clusters near the ends of stems. Fruit is a black shiny capsule 0.3 cm long with seeds to 0.1 cm long. Flowers throughout the year and found in salt marshes. Suitable for wet areas and water features.
OR GROW ME
Coast Saw Sedge
Perennial sedge (grass-like), with very rough leaf margins and underside. Forms dense tussocks to 1.5 m high and 1 m across, with leaves over 1 m long and drooping. The leaf blade is inrolled and stems are rigid and erect. Branchlets containing the flowering heads, near the ends of stems, are a spike-like arrangement 20-40 cm long, with numerous, yellow or brown clusters of flowers throughout the year.
Important food plant for sedge skipper butterflies.
Back to WEED Profiles