Wallaby Grass

Description

Common names

Wallaby Grass, Smooth Wallaby-grass.

Scientific names

Danthonia laevis.

Family

Poaceae.

Genus

Danthonia.

Presence in Australia

Widespread and common throughout region.

This specie has been identified in the following Australian states: NSW, ACT, Vic, Tas, SA.

Habitat

Well-drained infertile soils.

Habit

Tufted perennial grasses with fine leaves and fluffy seedheads.

Characteristics

Grow year-round.

Seed collection

When seedheads turn off-white, dry out and start to disintegrate.

Propagation

From surface-sown seed, division of clumps, or from transplants.

Wildlife

Tend to produce high quality forage in winter and withstand seasonal grazing. Excellent habitat. Food for seed-eating birds, including finches, and the Turquoise Parrot. Birds including the Speckled Warbler and Rufous Songlark nest in and under tussocks. Tussocks good cover for reptiles, including legless lizards. Excellent grazing value. Food source for native grazers and butterfly larvae.

Ornamental

Excellent "contrast" plants in native landscaping, and for rockeries. Plant in groups for best effect. Rejuvenate old plants by severe trimming or burning, and water afterwards to encourage growth.

Other

Valued for persistence, palatability and productivity. The Danthonia genus is in the process of being divided into Notodanthonia and Rytidosperma. Important components of natural pastures in temperate areas. Pasture for large proportion of Australian wool industry.