14 Jan Pampas grass
A very popular garden plant in the 1960’s and 1970’s, Pampas Grass has earned its status as a declared noxious weed.
Origin: South America and New Zealand
Habit: Large, long lived perennial tussock forming ornamental grass to 4.5m tall.
Leaves: Light green, up to 2m long and finely tapering with prominent midrib and sharp edges that will cut the skin. A rim of hairs (to 3mm long) at leaf base (ligule).
Flowers: Large feathery heads on stems to 3m tall. White-biege (C. selloana), or pink-mauve (C. jubata). Up to 50 plumes formed on one mature plant. Both single sex and bisexual plants exist. Summer-Winter.
Fruit: Small (2mm), short-lived, up to 100,000 seeds set per plume.
Roots: Strong fibrous root with rhizomes capable of re-shooting.
Dispersal: Seed spread by water, wind, humans, contaminated soil (earthmoving equipment, car tyres etc) and garden refuse dumping.
Control: Crowning, Slash and hand dig with mattock, Foliar spray. Bag all seed heads.