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Genus: Chionochloa

Chionochloa Species in
Family: Poaceae

About 20 species of evergreen grasses, almost all from New Zealand (one from New South Wales, Australia). They are mainly tussock-forming with long arching leaves which in some species are tawny-green or red-brown tinted. The flowering spikelets are small and glistening, carried in elegant, loose panicles well above the leaves in summer.


Although essentially plants of montane regions and above the tree line, they are rather big for all but the larger rock garden. Where there is room even one plant makes an arresting focal point. Moist but not wet soil and full sun are required. Propagation by seed in spring, also division at the same time, but results can be disappointing.