Nassella Tussock (RPMP 2018)
Why is Nassella Tussock a pest?
Nassella Tussock is an invasive plant. It is able to quickly spread and dominate pastures. The Tussock is also unpalatable to stock. Nassella has a high reproduction capability with 120,000 seeds being present on one mature plant. The plant tolerates a wide variety of environmental conditions but it thrives in sunny, dry hill country so has the potential to cover the majority of pastoral land in Marlborough.
Below is a video from the 1960's showing Nassella Tussock. Video courtesy of Environment Canterbury.
How is it spread?
Nassella is spread by wind. The masses of seedheads on the Nassella plant in summer are very light and easily detached from the plant and even a small breeze can move the seedheads a good distance. Nassella seeds can be spread over 10km or more in strong winds.