Andropogon virginicus L.

Whisky Grass

Sp. Pl. 1046 (1753) APNI

Taxonomic status:Accepted

Occurrence status:Present

Establishment means:Naturalised

Tufted perennial, browning off over summer, culms to c. 1 m high. Leaf-blades flat or folded, to 30 cm long, pilose on the upper surface toward base; sheaths keeled, distichous, glabrous or pilose; ligule a fringed membrane c. 0.5 mm long. Inflorescence slender with several branches, each terminated by a cluster of 2–4 racemes c. 3 cm long, about as long as the subtending, usually purplish spathe; axes of the racemes plumose with fine, silky hairs; fertile spikelet c. 3 mm long (excluding awn); glumes as long as spikelet; lemma of fertile floret thinly membranous, slightly shorter than spikelet, palea sometimes absent; awn very fine, 1–2 cm long, arising from notch in fertile lemma; sterile spikelet lacking, sometimes appearing as a small swelling at the end of the plumose, 2–5 mm long pedicel. Flowers Mar.–May.

*EGL, *HSF, *VRiv. Also naturalised in Qld, NSW. Native to southern USA. In Victoria, occurs on poor sandy ground between Nowa Nowa and the NSW border, with isolated occurrences near Eltham and Wodonga.

As in NSW and Qld the species appears to be confined to roadsides.

Source: Walsh, N.G. (1994). Poaceae. In: Walsh, N.G.; Entwisle, T.J. (eds), Flora of Victoria Vol. 2, Ferns and Allied Plants, Conifers and Monocotyledons. Inkata Press, Melbourne.
Hero image
Distribution map
life Life
kingdom Plantae
phylum Tracheophyta
superorder Lilianae
order Poales
family Poaceae
genus Andropogon
Higher taxa


Source: AVH (2014). Australia's Virtual Herbarium, Council of Heads of Australasian Herbaria, <>. Find Andropogon virginicus in AVH ; Victorian Biodiversity Atlas, © The State of Victoria, Department of Environment and Primary Industries (published Dec. 2014) Find Andropogon virginicus in Victorian Biodiversity Atlas
  Bioregion Occurrence status Establishment means
Victorian Riverina present naturalised
East Gippsland Lowlands present naturalised
Highlands-Southern Fall present introduced

State distribution

Distribution map
New South Wales
Australian Capital Territory