Nardus stricta

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Taxonomy
Kingdom: Plantae
Phylum: Magnoliophyta
Class: Liliopsida
Order: Cyperales
Family: Poaceae
Genus: Nardus
Species: stricta
Scientific Name
Nardus stricta
L.
Common Names

matgrass

Overview

Appearance
Nardus stricta is a slow growing perennial bunchgrass that is densely tufted, and long-lived.
Foliage
Leaves are hard and bristle-like, bluish green and up to 0.25 in. (0.6 cm) wide, appearing narrower because blades are tightly folded along the midrib.
Flowers
It produces unbranched flower-spikes that carry the single-flowered spikelets along one side only. Matgrass flowers from June until August.
Fruit
Tiny spikelets can produce 1000 seeds during each blooming.
Ecological Threat
Nardus stricta is a non-native grass with the potential to out-compete desirable grasses in intensively grazed areas. Because it is not favored by grazing animals, matgrass has a competitive edge. It reproduces mostly through transport of tufts in mud clinging to the hooves of grazing animals. It is difficult to eliminate because of the difficulty locating it in mixed grass stands. Untreated plants develop seeds and perpetuate infestations for decades.  It occurs in damp areas near swamps, estuaries and watercourses. It is native to eastern Europe.

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