Japanese Stiltgrass – NOT YET IN REGION

Photo by Chris Evans, Illinois Wildlife Action Plan, Bugwood.org

Additional Images

Common Name: Japanese stiltgrass
Scientific Name: Microstegium vimineum
Origin: Asia

Description

Japanese stiltgrass is an annual grass that sprawls along the ground as it grows. The leaves are pale green, narrow, and lance-shaped with a distinctive silvery stripe of hairs along the midrib. Tiny flowers are produced on slender stalks in late summer.

Habitat

Japanese stiltgrass is especially adapted to low light conditions and will thrive in a wide range of habitats including woodlands, wetlands, fields, and roadsides.

Threat

Japanese stiltgrass spreads to form extensive mats that displace native plant species that are not able to compete with it. Invasions can also change soil nutrient cycling processes, inhibit tree survival and growth, and reduce light availability. After it dies back in late fall, it forms a thick layer of smothering thatch that is slow to decompose and creates a fire hazard.

NYS Threat Ranking Assessment Score = Very High, 85.00

Management

Hand pulling and herbicides are commonly used for control of this plant. Because hand pulling plants disturbs the soil and may expose stiltgrass seed from previous seasons, handpulling will need to be repeated for many seasons until the seed bank is exhausted.

Distribution: View Map

This species has not yet been discovered in the Adirondack PRISM.