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Stipa tenacissima - Loefl. ex L.

Common Name Esparto Grass, Esparto
Family Poaceae or Gramineae
USDA hardiness 7-10
Known Hazards None known
Habitats Dry sandy calcareous or gypsaceous soils[50].
Range Europe - Spain to N. Africa.
Edibility Rating    (0 of 5)
Other Uses    (0 of 5)
Weed Potential No
Medicinal Rating    (0 of 5)
Care
Frost Hardy Well drained soil Moist Soil Full sun
Stipa tenacissima Esparto Grass, Esparto


http://commons.wikimedia.org/wiki/User:Lumbar
Stipa tenacissima Esparto Grass, Esparto
http://commons.wikimedia.org/wiki/User:Xemenendura

 

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Summary


Physical Characteristics

 icon of manicon of flower
Stipa tenacissima is a PERENNIAL growing to 1 m (3ft 3in).
It is hardy to zone (UK) 8 and is not frost tender. The species is hermaphrodite (has both male and female organs) and is pollinated by Wind.
Suitable for: light (sandy), medium (loamy) and heavy (clay) soils and prefers well-drained soil. Suitable pH: acid, neutral and basic (alkaline) soils. It cannot grow in the shade. It prefers dry or moist soil. The plant can tolerates strong winds but not maritime exposure.

Synonyms

Macrochloa tenacissima. (L.)Kunth.

Habitats

 Cultivated Beds;

Edible Uses

None known

Medicinal Uses

Plants For A Future can not take any responsibility for any adverse effects from the use of plants. Always seek advice from a professional before using a plant medicinally.



None known

Other Uses

Fibre;  Paper;  Wax.

A fibre from the leaves and stems is used in making paper, mats, ropes etc[46, 57, 61, 103, 171]. It is very strong[1] and is particularly used in making high quality paper[171]. The leaves and stems are harvested in the summer, cut into usable pieces and soaked in clear water for 24 hours[189]. They are then cooked in lye for 2 hours and beaten in a bell mill. The plant is a source of a vegetable wax[57]. No further details.

Cultivation details

Industrial Crop: Biomass;  Industrial Crop: Wax;  Management: Hay;  Regional Crop.

Easily grown in an ordinary well-drained garden soil in full sun[1, 200]. Succeeds in dry soils. Plants are fairly wind resistant[K]. This species is not hardy in the colder areas of the country, it tolerates temperatures down to between -5 and -10°c[200]. The leaves of wild plants are often harvested and exported for their use in paper making[46].

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Propagation

Seed - sow March in a greenhouse and only just cover the seed. Germination should take place within 2 weeks, but make sure that the compost does not dry out. Prick out the seedlings into individual pots when they are large enough to handle and plant them out in early summer. The seed can also be sown outdoors in April. Division in spring. Larger divisions can be planted out direct into their permanent positions. We have found it best to pot up the smaller divisions and grow them on in a lightly shaded position in a cold frame, planting them out once they are well established in the summer.

Other Names

If available other names are mentioned here

Found In

Countries where the plant has been found are listed here if the information is available

Weed Potential

Right plant wrong place. We are currently updating this section. Please note that a plant may be invasive in one area but may not in your area so it’s worth checking.

Conservation Status

IUCN Red List of Threatened Plants Status :

Related Plants
Latin NameCommon NameEdibility RatingMedicinal Rating
Stipa splendensChee Grass00
Stipa vaseyiSleepy Grass01
Stipa viridulaGreen Needlegrass01

 

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Expert comment

Author

Loefl. ex L.

Botanical References

50200

Links / References

For a list of references used on this page please go here

Readers comment

ali khouaja   Mon Nov 13 2006

the harvest of the stipa tenacissima has to be out of flowering period the cellulose content changes from a season to another and from bioclimate to anither

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Subject : Stipa tenacissima  
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