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


Chionochloa pallens (Mid-ribbed snow tussock)

Kingdom: Plantae
(Unranked): Angiosperms
(Unranked): Monocots
(Unranked): Commelinids
Order: Poales
Family: Poaceae
Genus: Chionochloa
Species: C. pallens
Scientific name: Chionochloa pallens
Common Names: Mid-ribbed snow tussock

Mid-ribbed snow tussock is grass in the Poaceae family. This native grass is a large green or tawny green tussock, usually less than 1m tall, but can range from 60cm to 2m high. Leaves are soft and flat, with an obvious yellow midrib beneath.
Mid-ribbed snow tussock is the most widely distributed of all the Chionochloa species. It is commonly found in the penalpine zone (from 1100m), though they can extend up to elevations of 1800m. They occur at moist, well drained sites with weakly weathered colluvium, especially along and west of the Main Divide in the South Island, and on the axial ranges between the Manawatu Gorge and East Cape in the North Island, including Mt Hikurangi and Mt Egmont.
It can be purchased at native plant nurseries.

Photographed at Otari Native Botanic Garden and Wilton's Bush Reserve. Wellington.