Cortaderia selloana - (J.A. & J.H. Schultes) Aschers. & Graebn.
Selloa Pampas Grass
Other English Common Names: Pampas Grass, Uruguayan Pampas Grass
Other Common Names: Uruguayan pampas grass
Synonym(s): Cortaderia dioica (Spreng.) Speg.
Taxonomic Status: Accepted
Related ITIS Name(s): Cortaderia selloana (Schult. & Schult. f.) Asch. & Graebn. (TSN 41597)
Unique Identifier: ELEMENT_GLOBAL.2.161048
Element Code: PMPOA1P050
Informal Taxonomy: Plants, Vascular - Flowering Plants - Grass Family
 
Kingdom Phylum Class Order Family Genus
Plantae Anthophyta Monocotyledoneae Cyperales Poaceae Cortaderia
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Concept Reference
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Concept Reference: Kartesz, J.T. 1994. A synonymized checklist of the vascular flora of the United States, Canada, and Greenland. 2nd edition. 2 vols. Timber Press, Portland, OR.
Concept Reference Code: B94KAR01HQUS
Name Used in Concept Reference: Cortaderia selloana
Conservation Status
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NatureServe Status

Global Status: GNR
Global Status Last Changed: 22Mar1994
Rounded Global Status: GNR - Not Yet Ranked
Nation: United States
National Status: NNA
Nation: Canada
National Status: NNA (22Mar1994)

U.S. & Canada State/Province Status
Due to latency between updates made in state, provincial or other NatureServe Network databases and when they appear on NatureServe Explorer, for state or provincial information you may wish to contact the data steward in your jurisdiction to obtain the most current data. Please refer to our Distribution Data Sources to find contact information for your jurisdiction.
United States Alabama (SNA), California (SNA), Florida (SNA), Georgia (SNR), Kentucky (SNA), Louisiana (SNA), New Jersey (SNA), Oregon (SNA), Rhode Island (SNR), South Carolina (SNA), Tennessee (SNA), Texas (SNA), Utah (SNA), Virginia (SNA)
Canada Ontario (SNA)

Other Statuses

NatureServe Global Conservation Status Factors

Other NatureServe Conservation Status Information

Distribution
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U.S. States and Canadian Provinces

Due to latency between updates made in state, provincial or other NatureServe Network databases and when they appear on NatureServe Explorer, for state or provincial information you may wish to contact the data steward in your jurisdiction to obtain the most current data. Please refer to our Distribution Data Sources to find contact information for your jurisdiction.
Color legend for Distribution Map
NOTE: The distribution shown may be incomplete, particularly for some rapidly spreading exotic species.

U.S. & Canada State/Province Distribution
United States ALexotic, CAexotic, FLexotic, GA, KYexotic, LAexotic, NJexotic, ORexotic, RI, SCexotic, TNexotic, TXexotic, UTexotic, VAexotic
Canada ONexotic

Range Map
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Ecology & Life History Not yet assessed
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Economic Attributes Not yet assessed
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Management Summary Not yet assessed
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Population/Occurrence Delineation Not yet assessed
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Population/Occurrence Viability
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U.S. Invasive Species Impact Rank (I-Rank)
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Disclaimer: While I-Rank information is available over NatureServe Explorer, NatureServe is not actively developing or maintaining these data. Species with I-RANKs do not represent a random sample of species exotic in the United States; available assessments may be biased toward those species with higher-than-average impact.

I-Rank: Medium/Low
Rounded I-Rank: Medium
I-Rank Reasons Summary: This tall perennial grass can cause a fire hazard with its flammable material. It slows the establishment of tree seedlings in forests. It occurs in 11 states in the US and has the highest reported impacts in California and Hawaii. Due to increased seed production opportunities, this plant is spreading at least in California. It is somewhat hard to manage due to its extensive root system, but can be controlled by digging out.
Subrank I - Ecological Impact: Low
Subrank II - Current Distribution/Abundance: Medium
Subrank III - Trend in Distribution/Abundance: Medium
Subrank IV - Management Difficulty: Unknown
I-Rank Review Date: 22Apr2004
Evaluator: Lu, S.
Native anywhere in the U.S?
Native Range: Native to South America (PIER 2003), specifically to Argentina, Brazil, and Urugray (Bossard et al. 2000).

Download "An Invasive Species Assessment Protocol: Evaluating Non-Native Plants for their Impact on Biodiversity". (PDF, 1.03MB)
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Screening Questions

S-1. Established outside cultivation as a non-native? YES
Comments: This species is a non-native that is established outside of cultivation (Kartesz 1999).

S-2. Present in conservation areas or other native species habitat? Yes
Comments: Invades wet to dry climates in Hawaii in disturbed to native environments (Starr et al. 2003).

Subrank I - Ecological Impact: Low

1. Impact on Ecosystem Processes and System-wide Parameters:Moderate significance
Comments: Increases the fire risk by producing large amounts of flammable material (PIER 2003). Heavy infestations can block access to plantations and pose a significant fire hazard (Bossard et al. 2000).

2. Impact on Ecological Community Structure:Insignificant

3. Impact on Ecological Community Composition:Low significance
Comments: Competes with tree seedlings in forests and can slow their establishment and growth (Bossard et al. 2000).

4. Impact on Individual Native Plant or Animal Species:Insignificant

5. Conservation Significance of the Communities and Native Species Threatened:Insignificant

Subrank II. Current Distribution and Abundance: Medium

6. Current Range Size in Nation:Moderate significance
Comments: Established in 11 states in the US, including Alabama, California, Georgia, Louisiana, New Jersey, Oregon, and South Carolina, Tennessee, Texas, Utah, and Virginia (Kartesz 1999).

7. Proportion of Current Range Where the Species is Negatively Impacting Biodiversity:Moderate significance
Comments: Escaped cultivation in California and spreads along sandy, moist ditch banks throughout coastal regions of southern California below 1,000 feet (Bossard et al. 2000). Heaviest infestations in California were south of Point Conception. Current efforts in Hawaii to list this plant as a state noxious weed. (Starr et al. 2003)

8. Proportion of Nation's Biogeographic Units Invaded:High/Low significance
Comments: At least 6 TNC ecoregions occupied, at most 38 TNC ecoregions (Inference using data from Kartesz 1999 and TNC Ecoregion 2001 map).

9. Diversity of Habitats or Ecological Systems Invaded in Nation:Moderate significance
Comments: Invades a variety of habitats in Hawaii from wet to dry climates in disturbed to native environments (Starr et al. 2003). Subhumid and semi-arid subtropical regions in open sunny places receiving added moisture, becoming naturalized in damp places, depressions, along stream banks, the margins of mangrove swamps and, in particular, disturbed areas associated with roads, pipeline cuts and walking trails in forest areas and waste places. (PIER 2003).

Subrank III. Trend in Distribution and Abundance: Medium

10. Current Trend in Total Range within Nation:Moderate significance
Comments: Introduced to California about 1848. Appears to be expanding its distribution in California, but so far spread of this species has probably been limited by few opportunities for seed production. This species is functionally diocious, and due to selection in ornamental plants for the showier female plumes, not many opportunities to produce seed exist, until recently. There has been a recent trend for nurseries to propagate this species from seed and since it is impossible to distinguish male from female plants before they flower, the result is an increase in the proportion of male plants in the population. As a result, there are more opportunities for seed production and spread of this plant. (Bossard et al. 2000)

11. Proportion of Potential Range Currently Occupied:Low significance
Comments: In its native range, it grows in relatively damp soils and along river margins (Starr et al. 2003). Hardy from zones 5B to 11 (Gilman 1993).

12. Long-distance Dispersal Potential within Nation:Moderate significance
Comments: Widely cultivated and distributed around the world through the global nursery trade (Starr et al. 2003). Seeds are wind-dispersed (PIER 2003). Escapes from cultivation by fragmentation of parent plant or to a limited extent, by seed (Bossard et al. 2000).

13. Local Range Expansion or Change in Abundance:Moderate significance
Comments: After the 1940's, this species spread rapidly from southern California. By the 1950's populations were established in the San Francisco Bay Area as well as southern California. It spread up the deltas of the Sacramento and San Joaquin rivers, as well as along the coast during the 1960's and the 1970's. It expanded inland, unlike Cortaderia jubata. In Hawaii, a few plants were recently observed naturalizing in Olinda and Kula on the island of Maui. (Starr et al. 2003)

14. Inherent Ability to Invade Conservation Areas and Other Native Species Habitats:Moderate significance
Comments: Invades a variety of habitats in Hawaii from wet to dry climates in disturbed to native environments (Starr et al. 2003).

15. Similar Habitats Invaded Elsewhere:High/Low significance
Comments: Invasive in New Zealand (Starr et al. 2003).

16. Reproductive Characteristics:Low significance
Comments: In this species, both male and female plants must be present for seeds to occur, and propagation is usually through root divisions (Starr et al. 2003). Fast growth rate (Gilman 1993).

Subrank IV. General Management Difficulty: Unknown

17. General Management Difficulty:Moderate significance
Comments: Plants may be dug out, but all rhizomes must be removed. Has an extensive root system, where lateral roots can spread to thirteen feet in diameter and eleven and one-half feet in depth. (Bossard et al. 2000) Can also be controlled using herbicide. (PIER 2003)

18. Minimum Time Commitment:Not ranked

19. Impacts of Management on Native Species:Not ranked

20. Accessibility of Invaded Areas:Not ranked
Authors/Contributors
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Botanical data developed by NatureServe and its network of natural heritage programs (see Local Programs), The North Carolina Botanical Garden, and other contributors and cooperators (see Sources).

References
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  • Bossard, C.C., J.M. Randall, and M. Hoshovsky. (eds.) 2000. Invasive Plants of California's Wildlands. University of California Press, Berkeley, CA.

  • Gilman, E.F. and D.G. Watson. 1993. Fact sheets adapted from a series by the Environmental Horticulture Department, University of Florida for the United States Forest Service. Available: http://edis.ifas.ufl.edu. (Accessed 2004).

  • Kartesz, J.T. 1994. A synonymized checklist of the vascular flora of the United States, Canada, and Greenland. 2nd edition. 2 vols. Timber Press, Portland, OR.

  • Kartesz, J.T. 1996. Species distribution data at state and province level for vascular plant taxa of the United States, Canada, and Greenland (accepted records), from unpublished data files at the North Carolina Botanical Garden, December, 1996.

  • Kartesz, J.T. 1999. A synonymized checklist and atlas with biological attributes for the vascular flora of the United States, Canada, and Greenland. First edition. In: Kartesz, J.T., and C.A. Meacham. Synthesis of the North American Flora, Version 1.0. North Carolina Botanical Garden, Chapel Hill, N.C.

  • Kartesz, J.T., and R. Kartesz. 1980. A synonymized checklist of the vascular flora of the United States, Canada and Greenland. Vol. 2. The biota of North America. Univ. of North Carolina Press, Chapel Hill. 500 pp.

  • Pacific Island Ecosystems at Risk Project (PIER). 2003. Plant threats to Pacific ecosystems - species of environmental concern. Last updated 20 December 2003. Online. Available: http://www.hear.org/pier/threats.htm. (Accessed 2004).

  • Starr, F., K. Starr, and L. Loope. 2003. Plants of Hawaii Reports. USGS - Biological Resources Division, Haleakala Field Station. Available: http://www.hear.org/starr/hiplants/reports/. (Accessed 2004).

  • The Nature Conservancy. 2001. Map: TNC Ecoregions of the United States. Modification of Bailey Ecoregions. Online . Accessed May 2003.

  • Weber, E. 2003. Invasive plant species of the world: a reference guide to environmental weeds. CABI Publishing, Cambridge, Massachusetts. 548 pp.

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