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Indian couch
(Bothriochloa pertusa)

pertusa.gif (6368 bytes)


  • creeping grass invading overgrazed native pastures
  • naturalised over wide areas of north Queensland
  • early seeding
  • less palatable than speargrass.

Indian couch is a strongly stoloniferous grass that has naturalised over large areas between Bown and ChartersTowers in north Queensland.

Indian couch has invaded because of heavy overgrazing of the native speargrass pastures since the 1970s, and has provided good ground cover and reasonable grazing. Cattle graze speargrass first during the wet season, allowing couch runners to invade, but can graze the finer seed stems of couch later in autumn.

The Bowen strain of Indian couch can flower within one month of rain, and seed is spread by wind. Bowen is the least vigourous strain of pertusa in Queensland, but the best naturaliser; Yeppoon strain is taller, later flowering and more suited to cattle grazing. Dawson and Emerald are very late-flowering strains for lawn turf.



Creator: Ian Partridge,
Date created: 14 April 1998  Revised: 15 January 2003




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