Weed of the Month (August): Mexican Feather Grass
Mexican feather grass is a major threat to Australia’s grazing industry – it is unpalatable to stock, difficult to control, and capable of thriving in a wide range of climates and soil types. Introduced to Tasmania as an ornamental plant, Mexican feather grass hasn’t yet spread from the few gardens it has been found in – but if it does, the cost of controlling it could add up to millions of dollars each year.
One small patch of Mexican feather grass is known to occur in the Huon Valley – since its removal over a year ago, hundreds of new seedlings have emerged from the persistent soil seed bank – regular monitoring and control of new seedlings will need to be maintained for several years to ensure the patch has been eradicated.
In 2021, Huon Valley Council is undertaking a project to prevent the spread of Mexican feather grass and other serious grass weeds in the Huon Valley. This project will contribute to Stage 2 of the Tasmanian Weeds Action Fund, a $5 million Tasmanian Government initiative funded from 2018 for five years and delivered by NRM North. The project will help Council officers know where to look for undiscovered infestations, and educate land managers in identifying and protecting their properties from these serious weeds.
If you have a suspicious grass growing on your property, don’t remove it, but send a photo to Council’s Weed Management Officer at email@example.com, or phone Council for more information.
Have you seen it?
- Dense, fine-leaved tussock grass up to 70cm tall
- The very fine leaves feel smooth when rolled between fingers, but coarse when sliding fingers along the blade
- Seed heads can appear almost purple in colour
- Seeds are attached to long, hair like threads which tangle together to form dense mats on the ground, and cling to clothes, fur, and tools.
We need your help to eradicate this weed from the Huon Valley.
Please report possible sightings to Council:
Weed Management Officer
(03) 6264 0300
Information on weed management, including developing your own weed management plan, can be found on our Weeds and the Huon Valley webpage.
Image credit: G&A Carle