Plant of the Month – Ottochloa gracillima

Native grasses are often overlooked in garden design and Ottochloa gracimilla is one that flourishes each rainy season in my garden. Found mostly in open Eucalyptus forests, it thrives in the shady area of the garden where it becomes thick and lush. With slender alternate leaves and sprawling with stems up to 15cm high, it has delicate seed heads.

Although a perennial grass, it will die back in the dry season. I am happy to treat it as an ‘annual” as the dried grass adds to the natural mulch in the native part of the garden to help the larger plants manage the dry.

If you are lucky enough to have an undisturbed shady section in your garden – still possible at Marcus Beach where the subdivisions left the native vegetation intact – this grass will readily colonise when the rain arrives.

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