T.E.R:R.A.I.N - Taranaki Educational Resource: Research, Analysis and Information Network


Austroderia richardii (South Island Toe Toe)

Kingdom:   Plantae
(Unranked):        Angiosperms
(Unranked):        Monocots
(Unranked):        Commelinids
Order:       Poales
Family:      Poaceae
Subfamily:  Danthonioideae
Tribe:        Danthonieae
Genus:      Austroderia
Species:     A. richardii
Binomial name: Austroderia richardii
Synonyms: Arundo richardii, Arundo kakao, Arundo australis, Gynerium zeelandicum, Cortaderia richardii. (Cortaderia has been reclassified and renamed Austroderia in 2011.)
Common name: South Island Toe Toe, Plumed tussock, Toe Toe Grass 

Austroderia richardii is a large growing evergreen grass that forms large clumps (up to 1.5m tall) of narrow arching leathery leaves, during in summer & autumn it has long-lasting 3m flower spikes with plume-like silvery-white inflorescences which are up to 60cm long.
This is the smallest of the NZ native toetoe naturally occurs throughout the South Island and Stewart Island from sea level to about 600m. Common along stream banks, river beds, around lake margins, disturbed areas and is also found in sand dunes, especially along the Foveaux Strait. This plant is very hardy and fast growing withstanding strong winds, cold conditions, drought and coastal conditions. 

Surface of a leaf.