Deschampsia cespitosa (L.) P.Beauv.

Ess. Agrostogr. 91: t.18 fig.3 (1812) APNI

Taxonomic status:Accepted

Occurrence status:Present

Establishment means:Native

Threat status:Victoria: rare (r)

Tufted glabrous perennial, culms erect, to 150 cm high. Leaves glabrous; blade inrolled or flat, smooth on the lower surface, scabrous above, to 50 cm long and 4 mm wide; ligule firm, acute, 3–10 mm long. Inflorescence an open or contracted panicle, 8–30 cm long. Spikelets 2-(rarely 3)-flowered, 3.5–6 mm long, shining; glumes lanceolate, 3–4 mm long, usually purplish; lemma oblong, 3–4.5 mm long, membranous, erose at apex, callus hairs c. 1 mm long; awn straight, inserted halfway down lemma or lower, shortly exceeding lemma apex, rarely about as long as lemma; rachilla bristle plumose, slightly shorter than upper lemma. Flowers Sep.–Feb.

CVU, EGU, GipP, Glep, Gold, HNF, HSF, OtP, SnM, VAlp. Widely distributed throughout the world and largely confined to damp peaty sites at both low and high elevations. In Victoria, an uncommon grass of damp to wet alpine or subalpine grasslands (e.g. Bennison, Bogong, Dargo and Nunniong Plains, Omeo district) with a disjunct occurrences near Woodend, Colac and Dartmoor in the far south-west. A 1905 specimen at MEL labelled 'Sandringham' is of dubious origin.

Created by: Neville Walsh, 2015-07-17
Hero image
Distribution map
life Life
kingdom Plantae
phylum Tracheophyta
superorder Lilianae
order Poales
family Poaceae
genus Deschampsia
Higher taxa


Source: AVH (2014). Australia's Virtual Herbarium, Council of Heads of Australasian Herbaria, <>. Find Deschampsia cespitosa in AVH ; Victorian Biodiversity Atlas, © The State of Victoria, Department of Environment and Primary Industries (published Dec. 2014) Find Deschampsia cespitosa in Victorian Biodiversity Atlas
  Bioregion Occurrence status Establishment means
Glenelg Plain present native
Gippsland Plain present native
Otway Plain present native
Goldfields present native
Central Victorian Uplands present native
East Gippsland Uplands present native
Highlands-Southern Fall present native
Highlands-Northern Fall present native
Victorian Alps present native
Snowy Mountains present native

State distribution

Distribution map
South Australia
New South Wales
Australian Capital Territory