Australian Tropical Rainforest Plants - Online edition

Paspalum paniculatum L.

Shrub (woody or herbaceous, 1-6 m tall)
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Scale bar 10mm. © CSIRO

Linnaeus, C. von (1759) Systema Naturae : 855. Type: (not cited).

Common name

Russell River Grass


Usually flowers and fruits as a herb but can attain a height of 1-2 m in favourable conditions.


Leaf blades linear or oblong, about 1.5-2.5 cm wide and 20-40 cm or more in length. Sheathing base about 10-15 cm long. Venation longitudinal and parallel with about 8-11 veins more prominent than the rest. Hairs on the upper surface of the leaf blade about 2-3 mm long. Nodes densely clothed in hairs about 5-6 mm long.


Inflorescence a panicle of racemes. Individual flowers very small, less than 1 mm diam. Flowers or florets paired and produced on one side of the raceme. Stamens three, anthers purple and longer than the filaments. Styles two, free from one another, stigmas feathery.


Features not available.


Features not available.

Distribution and Ecology

An introduced species originally from tropical America and the West Indies now naturalised in CYP, NEQ, CEQ and southwards as far as north-eastern New South Wales. Altitudinal range in NEQ from near sea level to 800 m. Also introduced to tropical Africa, Asia, Malesia and the Pacific islands.

Natural History & Notes

Food plant for the larval stages of the Common Swift Butterfly. Common & Waterhouse (1981).

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