Imperata cylindrica

Blady Grass

Coarse, erect perennial grass, spreading vigorously from underground stems. Flowering stem erect.

Additional information

  • FamilyPoaceae
  • StoreyLower storey
  • Size0.3-0.7 m high, stems to 1 m high
  • Plant groupingGrasses, Rushes & Sedges
  • LeavesNarrow, flat, mottled pale green leaves to 60 cm x 1.5 cm. Midrib prominent, margins finely serrated. Silky hairs at nodes and above sheath projection.
  • Flower colourWhite
  • Flowering timeNovember to March
  • FlowersDense, fluffy cylindrical spike-like flowerhead 7-20 cm long. Pairs of 2-flowered spikelets, one stalked, one stalkless, hidden by long silky hairs on back of and below lower pair of bracts. Does not always flower.
  • Bird attractingNo
  • Butterfly attractingFood plant for caterpillars
  • Frog habitatYes
  • Growing conditionsMoist well drained soils in moist and heathy woodland and lowland forest. Full sun, semi shade.
  • Garden useAn ornamental grass with attractive flowerheads which appear more commonly after fire. Use as an understorey in moist areas. Important habitat plant.
  • Commercially availableIndigenous nursery
  • Conservation statusLocally common within its preferred growing conditions
Photographer/s: 1 Colleen Miller ©; 2 David Blair ©

Plant Communities

  • 12 Manna Gum Riparian Forest - Dandenongs (EVC 18)
  • 29 Green Scentbark Herb-rich Foothill Forest (EVC 23)
  • 18 Messmate Shrubby Foothill Forest - Dandenongs (EVC 45)
  • 30 Swamp Gum Swampy Riparian Woodland (EVC 83)
  • 22 Silver-leaf Stringybark Heathy Woodland (EVC 48)
  • 33 Mountain Swamp Gum Swampy Riparian Woodland (EVC 83)
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