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Kikuyu grass

Scientific name Pennisetum clandestinum
Characteristics A vigorous coarse textured grass for the subtropics, particularly in highland areas or along the coast where the effect of high summer temperatures is moderated. For best results, it requires good soil fertility and moisture, but at the same time shows good drought tolerance because of its deeply rooted rhizomes. Kikuyu tolerates wear and usually recovers rapidly. Its shade tolerance, however, is poor. Kikuyu is renowned for its strong rhizomes, which invade adjacent areas such as garden beds. Seeded cultivars only compound this problem, and will result in kikuyu spreading well beyond the areas where it is required. Male-sterile (non-seeding) cultivars are becoming available as specialist lines, and these avoid the problem of invasive seedlings.

Examples

  • Common kikuyu
  • Whittet kikuyu
  • CT 5000