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

Chloris truncata (Windmill grass)

Kingdom: Plantae
(unranked): Angiosperms
(unranked): Monocots
(unranked): Commelinids
Order: Poales
Family: Poaceae
Subfamily: Chloridoideae
Genus: Chloris
Species: C. truncata
Binomial name: Chloris truncata
Common names: Windmill grass, Black windmill grass, Australian fingergrass, Australian windmill grass

Chloris truncata is a perennial grass originating from Australia. It was first reported on New Zealand’s mainland in coastal waste land in the Waitangi-Paihia locality, Northland in 1950 and in sandy waste land, Westshore, near Napier, 1950. It was previously recorded in 1948 from Great Island of the Three Kings group.

Chloris truncata is a low-growing, wiry, stoloniferous (roots are runners), perennial grass that forms small clumps of around 30 centimetres in diameter. It is usually 10 to 50 cm high.
The leaves are approximately 10–15 cm long with a distinctive obtuse tip and are keeled/boat shaped with the ligule minutely ciliate. They are a light green in colour with a prominent central vein.
The plant gets its common name from its conspicuous, windmill-shaped seed heads consisting of 5-10 branches. Each of the long black spikes is lined with black seeds which have two awns each. These seed heads break free from the plant and are disperse by wind until they become entangled in vegetation or along a fence-line.

The windmill-shaped seed head

Developing seed heads.

Thanks to Wikipedia for text and information: https://creativecommons.org/licenses/by-sa/3.0/