Grass Tree, Blackboy

Palm-like growth generally consisting of a trunk with a grass like tussock on top; leaves are normally long and thin (needle like), commonly a deep tap root makes transplanting very difficult. 


Feature plants - used for architectural affect in gardens and parks. Occasionally container plants (large, deep containers)


Many professionals in the horticulture industry claim that plants transplanted from the bush are difficult to establish and will, over a long period of time (up to 10 years), gradually die.
They are particularly susceptible to root rots, so drainage is important. They are very long lived, drought tolerant, require well drained conditions, prefer sandy soils, tolerate low soil fertility, and have a slow to medium growth rate. 


Fresh seed germinates very easily. Spray seedlings with fungicide to control root rots, and keep plants well spaced for good ventilation.


Several species have been cultivated successfully, including:

X. australis - Sunny or semi shaded position, frost tolerant, responds to moist soil, tolerates dry soil, shorter thick spike with  white flowers.

X. minor - Smaller species, white flowers on a short spike

X. preissii - Tall rough stem, long narrow upright leaves, white flowers on tall spike.


Plant Health

Root rots are a significant problem - particularly Phytopthera cinnamomi 

More info

From Australia

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