Festuca novae-zelandiae


Festuca: From the Latin festuca 'stem' or 'blade of grass'
novae-zelandiae: of New Zealand

Common Name(s)

Fescue tussock, hard tussock

Current Conservation Status

2012 - Not Threatened

Conservation status of New Zealand indigenous vascular plants, 2012
The conservation status of all known New Zealand vascular plant taxa at the rank of species and below were reassessed in 2012 using the New Zealand Threat Classification System (NZTCS). This report includes a statistical summary and brief notes on changes since 2009 and replaces all previous NZTCS lists for vascular plants. Authors: Peter J. de Lange, Jeremy R. Rolfe, Paul D. Champion, Shannel P. Courtney, Peter B. Heenan, John W. Barkla, Ewen K. Cameron, David A. Norton and Rodney A. Hitchmough. File size: 792KB

Previous Conservation Status

2009 - Not Threatened
2004 - Not Threatened


Festuca novae-zelandiae (Hack.) Cockayne



Flora Category

Vascular - Native

NVS Species Code


The National Vegetation Survey (NVS) Databank is a physical archive and electronic databank containing records of over 94,000 vegetation survey plots - including data from over 19,000 permanent plots. NVS maintains a standard set of species code abbreviations that correspond to standard scientific plant names from the Ngä Tipu o Aotearoa - New Zealand Plants database.

Structural Class



Festuca ovina subsp. matthewsii Hack.; Festuca ovina var. novae-zelandiae (Hack.) Cheeseman; Festuca ovina subsp. novae-zelandiae var. eu-novae-zelandiae Howarth; Festuca ovina subsp. novae-zelandiae var. novae-zelandiae subvar. novae-zelandiae; Festuca ovina subsp. novae-zelandiae var. novae-zelandiae subvar. pruinosa Howarth


Not Threatened

Chromosome No.

2n = 42

Endemic Taxon


Endemic Genus


Endemic Family


Life Cycle and Dispersal

Florets are dispersed by wind, water and attachment (Thorsen et al., 2009).

Where To Buy

Commonly sold by retail plant nurseries, often erroneously as Carex novae-zelandiae.

References and further reading

Thorsen, M. J.; Dickinson, K. J. M.; Seddon, P. J. 2009. Seed dispersal systems in the New Zealand flora. Perspectives in Plant Ecology, Evolution and Systematics 11: 285-309

This page last updated on 25 Sep 2014