Nassella cernua

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Nassella cernua
Nassella cernua.jpg

Vulnerable (NatureServe)
Scientific classification
Kingdom: Plantae
(unranked): Angiosperms
(unranked): Monocots
(unranked): Commelinids
Order: Poales
Family: Poaceae
Genus: Nassella
Species: N. cernua
Binomial name
Nassella cernua
(Stebbins & R.M. Love) Barkworth

Stipa cernua (former)

Nassella cernua (syn. Stipa cernua) is a species of grass known by the common name nodding needlegrass.

The bunchgrass is native to western California in the United States and Baja California in Mexico.[1][2][3]


Nassella cernua is a component of California and Baja California in native grasslands, chaparral, and juniper woodlands.[1][2] This bunchgrass is found in the California Coast Ranges and Transverse Ranges (U.S.), and Peninsular Ranges (U.S. & Mexico).[1]

This and many other native grasses of the California Floristic Province have declined because of the encroachment of introduced species of grasses, making native grasslands a very endangered habitat type, and this plant a listed Vulnerable species.[3]


The perennial Nassella cernua bunchgrass has stems up to 2–3 feet (0.61–0.91 m) tall. [4] The narrow leaves have a waxy texture.

The panicle is open with bending or nodding branches.[2] The awn is up to 4 inches (10 cm) long. [5]


Nassella cernua is cultivated as a drought-tolerant ornamental grass by specialty plant nurseries, for use in native plant and wildlife gardens, drought tolerant landscaping, and for habitat restoration projects. [4][6]

See also[edit]


  1. ^ a b c N. cernua.; Jepson.
  2. ^ a b c Nassella cernua. Grass Manual Treatment.
  3. ^ a b Nassella cernua. NatureServe.
  4. ^ a b Las Pilitas plant database — Stipa cernua Nodding needlegrass . accessed 7.7.2012
  5. ^ NPIN: N. cernua . accessed 7.7.2012.
  6. ^ Jepson Horticultural Database . accessed 7.7.2012.

External links[edit]