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Spilling over: Fountain Grass

Pennisetum setaceum, commonly fountain grass or pronkgras in Afrikaans.
The invader species is used for stabilising mine dumps. Naturally occurring in north Africa, this ornamental grass species has established in KZN and Gauteng, but now is also prevalent in Magaliesberg Biosphere including as far west as Rustenburg. It is one of the most invasive grasses.
Forms stands especially along road verges from where is can easily spread into adjacent natural veld.
Fountain grass spreads from the rhizome and the seeds, and rapidly becomes a significant problem: one season may have scattered clumps, and the next, the growth pattern will be continuous stands. The grass is drought resistance and unpalatable to animals.
Fountain Grass is a Category 1b invasive species, requiring compulsory control – remove and destroy!
The plant can be manually removed but take care to remove all the roots. Herbicide is only effective while the plant is actively growing (has a green appearance).

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