On Show this Week: Poa labillardieri
Poa labillardieri, also known as Poa lab and Common Tussock grass, is a hardy, easy please perennial native grass for every season. This ornamental grass has attractive semi-weeping foliage to around 1m, with showy seed heads during spring and summer. Poa lab is effective as a mass planting and is also a valuable food and shelter source for wildlife. There are other species and cultivars available with varying heights and colours to choose from.
Poa labillardieri lives up to 15 years and will tolerate most conditions including dry or wet, sun or shade, and clay or sand-based soils. Once established, there is not much attention needed aside from an annual prune to just above ground level – on a small scale, I find a mini scythe aka rice knife perfect for the job. The prunings are useful as a mulch.
Poa lab self-seeds readily, so if it’s an expanse you desire, then this is the plant for you. Otherwise, prune the lovely seed heads off after you have enjoyed them and before they mature to prevent their spread.