Invasive Species Compendium

Detailed coverage of invasive species threatening livelihoods and the environment worldwide


Setaria palmifolia
(palm grass)



Setaria palmifolia (palm grass)


  • Last modified
  • 19 November 2018
  • Datasheet Type(s)
  • Invasive Species
  • Pest
  • Preferred Scientific Name
  • Setaria palmifolia
  • Preferred Common Name
  • palm grass
  • Taxonomic Tree
  • Domain: Eukaryota
  •   Kingdom: Plantae
  •     Phylum: Spermatophyta
  •       Subphylum: Angiospermae
  •         Class: Monocotyledonae
  • Summary of Invasiveness
  • S. palmifolia is a robust perennial grass of the wet tropics that grows up to 2 m tall. It is native to Asia but has been widely introduced to Central America and the Pacific, usually as an ornamental, and has...

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Setaria palmifolia (palmgrass); habit, showing foliage and flowers. Makawao Forest Reserve, Maui.  November 13, 2004
TitleHabit, showing foliage and flowers
CaptionSetaria palmifolia (palmgrass); habit, showing foliage and flowers. Makawao Forest Reserve, Maui. November 13, 2004
Copyright©Forest Starr & Kim Starr - CC BY 4.0
Setaria palmifolia (palmgrass); habit, showing foliage and flowers. Makawao Forest Reserve, Maui.  November 13, 2004
Habit, showing foliage and flowersSetaria palmifolia (palmgrass); habit, showing foliage and flowers. Makawao Forest Reserve, Maui. November 13, 2004©Forest Starr & Kim Starr - CC BY 4.0
Setaria palmifolia (palmgrass); habit. Wahinepee, Maui.  August 03, 2002
CaptionSetaria palmifolia (palmgrass); habit. Wahinepee, Maui. August 03, 2002
Copyright©Forest Starr & Kim Starr - CC BY 4.0
Setaria palmifolia (palmgrass); habit. Wahinepee, Maui.  August 03, 2002
HabitSetaria palmifolia (palmgrass); habit. Wahinepee, Maui. August 03, 2002©Forest Starr & Kim Starr - CC BY 4.0
Setaria palmifolia (palmgrass); habit, showing foliage. Wahinepee, Maui.  August 03, 2002
TitleHabit, showing foliage
CaptionSetaria palmifolia (palmgrass); habit, showing foliage. Wahinepee, Maui. August 03, 2002
Copyright©Forest Starr & Kim Starr - CC BY 4.0
Setaria palmifolia (palmgrass); habit, showing foliage. Wahinepee, Maui.  August 03, 2002
Habit, showing foliageSetaria palmifolia (palmgrass); habit, showing foliage. Wahinepee, Maui. August 03, 2002©Forest Starr & Kim Starr - CC BY 4.0
Setaria palmifolia (palmgrass); leaves and inflorescences. Olinda Rd Makawao, Maui.  March 04, 2008
TitleLeaves and inflorescences
CaptionSetaria palmifolia (palmgrass); leaves and inflorescences. Olinda Rd Makawao, Maui. March 04, 2008
Copyright©Forest Starr & Kim Starr - CC BY 4.0
Setaria palmifolia (palmgrass); leaves and inflorescences. Olinda Rd Makawao, Maui.  March 04, 2008
Leaves and inflorescencesSetaria palmifolia (palmgrass); leaves and inflorescences. Olinda Rd Makawao, Maui. March 04, 2008©Forest Starr & Kim Starr - CC BY 4.0
Setaria palmifolia (palmgrass); habit. Makawao Forest Reserve, Maui.  December 26, 2004
CaptionSetaria palmifolia (palmgrass); habit. Makawao Forest Reserve, Maui. December 26, 2004
Copyright©Forest Starr & Kim Starr - CC BY 4.0
Setaria palmifolia (palmgrass); habit. Makawao Forest Reserve, Maui.  December 26, 2004
HabitSetaria palmifolia (palmgrass); habit. Makawao Forest Reserve, Maui. December 26, 2004©Forest Starr & Kim Starr - CC BY 4.0


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Preferred Scientific Name

  • Setaria palmifolia (J. Koenig) Stapf

Preferred Common Name

  • palm grass

Other Scientific Names

  • Panicum palmaefolium J. Koenig (1788)
  • Panicum palmifolia J. Koenig (1788)
  • Setaria lenis (Steud.) Miq. (1857)

Local Common Names

  • : bristlegrass; broadleaved bristlegrass; hailans pitpit; highland pitpit; knotroot; palmgrass; short pitpit
  • Australia: pleated pigeon grass
  • China: you gou wei cao; zhu tou cao; zhu ye cao; zong mao; zong ye cao; zong ye gou wei cao
  • France: que de rat
  • India: aruna; dhutesaro
  • Indonesia: lintabung; rumput daun pisang
  • Japan: sasa kibi
  • Papua New Guinea: kura; pitpit
  • Philippines: agusas
  • Samoa: vao ‘ofe‘ofe
  • Spain: pasto de palma
  • Thailand: ya kap phai
  • USA/Hawaii: mau‘u Kaleponi

Summary of Invasiveness

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S. palmifolia is a robust perennial grass of the wet tropics that grows up to 2 m tall. It is native to Asia but has been widely introduced to Central America and the Pacific, usually as an ornamental, and has naturalized and become invasive in many new territories, especially on Pacific islands, including Hawaii. It can be a serious weed of forestry, plantation crops and of rice, but also threatens endangered species in natural forest and other natural vegetation. Holm et al. (1979) classified it as ‘serious’ in India and Indonesia, while PIER (2012) score it 7 on the Australian weed risk assessment system, meaning that it should not be imported into Australia. Availability as an ornamental makes it a continuing threat to new regions.

Taxonomic Tree

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  • Domain: Eukaryota
  •     Kingdom: Plantae
  •         Phylum: Spermatophyta
  •             Subphylum: Angiospermae
  •                 Class: Monocotyledonae
  •                     Order: Cyperales
  •                         Family: Poaceae
  •                             Genus: Setaria
  •                                 Species: Setaria palmifolia

Notes on Taxonomy and Nomenclature

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Many other synonyms are listed by The Plant List (2012) in addition to those included in the Identity section. It was originally given the name Panicum palmifolium (also recorded as P. palmaefolium or P. palmifolia) by Koenig in 1788. It was first included in the genus Setaria as Setaria lenis in 1857. It has been given many other names within Agrostis, Panicum, Chaetochloa, Chamearaphis and Setaria. None of these are in current use, though the alternative spelling as S. palmaefolia occasionally occurs. Shukla (1996) comments that ‘this variable species approaches S. plicata on one hand and S. poiretiana on the other’ and some authors have suggested that the former is merely a depauperate form of S. palmifolia (e.g. Noltie, 2000).


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S. palmifolia is a densely tufted perennial grass with short, woody, knotty rhizomes, with foliage up to 1 m high. Individual leaves 20-60 cm long, 2-7 cm, wide, plicate (finely pleated with multiple ridges) glabrous or hispid, narrowed toward the base, apex acuminate. Leaf sheath hispid with irritant haitrs, ciliate near the ligule which is 2.5-3.5 mm long, also ciliate. Flowering culms may be decumbent at the base and rooting at the nodes, finally erect to 100-200 cm high, 5-8 mm diameter, nodes hairy. Panicle up to 60 cm long, 10 cm wide with branches each up to 20 cm, spreading, flexous. Spikelets 3-4 mm long, lanceolate, acute, some subtended by single bristles up to 15 mm long. Lower glume triangular, up to half as long as spikelet, upper glume 2/3 as long as spikelet, 5-7-nerved. Upper lemma somewhat rugose, shiny.  Caryopsis 2 mm long.

Plant Type

Top of page Grass / sedge
Seed propagated
Vegetatively propagated


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S. palmifolia is native to tropical Asia but has been introduced deliberately or otherwise further east to Australia, New Zealand, Pacific Islands and South and Central America. There are single records for Florida and Texas in the USA in 2003 (Missouri Botanic Garden, 2012). A number of sources suggest occurrence in West Africa, from Sierra Leone to Cameroon (Burkhill, 1985). However, Burkhill mentions that some specimens at least have been re-determined. However, there are apparently sound sporadic records from southern Ethiopia in 1976, Liberia in 1964, Uganda in 1994, Niger in 1996 and Madagascar in 1927 (GBIF, 2012). There is no indication as to whether these populations had become naturalized. But a record from southern Zambia in 1996 indicates it was ‘widespread in shady under-story’ (Missouri Botanic Garden, 2012).

In Japan most modern records are from the extreme south of the country or from the Island of Okinawa, but there is one fossil record from Honshu Island further north (GBIF, 2012).

Distribution Table

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The distribution in this summary table is based on all the information available. When several references are cited, they may give conflicting information on the status. Further details may be available for individual references in the Distribution Table Details section which can be selected by going to Generate Report.

Continent/Country/RegionDistributionLast ReportedOriginFirst ReportedInvasiveReferenceNotes


BhutanPresentNativeUSDA-ARS, 2012
CambodiaPresentNativeUSDA-ARS, 2012
ChinaPresentNative Invasive Weber et al., 2008
-AnhuiPresentNativeUSDA-ARS, 2012
-FujianPresentNativeUSDA-ARS, 2012
-GuangdongPresentNativeUSDA-ARS, 2012
-GuangxiPresentNativeUSDA-ARS, 2012
-GuizhouPresentNativeUSDA-ARS, 2012
-HainanPresentNativeUSDA-ARS, 2012
-HubeiPresentNativeUSDA-ARS, 2012
-HunanPresentNativeUSDA-ARS, 2012
-JiangxiPresentNativeUSDA-ARS, 2012
-SichuanPresentNativeUSDA-ARS, 2012
-TibetPresentNativeUSDA-ARS, 2012
-YunnanPresentNativeUSDA-ARS, 2012
-ZhejiangPresentNativeUSDA-ARS, 2012
IndiaPresentNativeUSDA-ARS, 2012
-Arunachal PradeshPresentNativeUSDA-ARS, 2012
-AssamWidespreadNativeUSDA-ARS, 2012
-BiharPresentNativeUSDA-ARS, 2012
-KarnatakaPresentNativeBanerjee, 1985
-ManipurPresentNativeUSDA-ARS, 2012
-MeghalayaPresentNativeUSDA-ARS, 2012
-NagalandPresentNativeUSDA-ARS, 2012
-OdishaPresentNativeUSDA-ARS, 2012
-SikkimPresentNativeUSDA-ARS, 2012
-TripuraPresentNativeUSDA-ARS, 2012
-West BengalPresentNativeUSDA-ARS, 2012
IndonesiaNativeUSDA-ARS, 2012
JapanPresentNativeUSDA-ARS, 2012
-KyushuPresentNativeUSDA-ARS, 2012
-Ryukyu ArchipelagoPresentNativeUSDA-ARS, 2012
LaosPresentNativeUSDA-ARS, 2012
MalaysiaPresentNativeUSDA-ARS, 2012
MyanmarPresentNativeUSDA-ARS, 2012
NepalPresentNativeUSDA-ARS, 2012
PakistanPresentNativeUSDA-ARS, 2012Kashmir
PhilippinesPresentNativeUSDA-ARS, 2012
Sri LankaPresentNativeUSDA-ARS, 2012
TaiwanPresentNativeUSDA-ARS, 2012
ThailandPresentNativeUSDA-ARS, 2012
VietnamPresentNativeUSDA-ARS, 2012


EthiopiaPresentIntroducedGBIF, 2012Recorded 1976
LiberiaPresentIntroducedGBIF, 2012
MadagascarPresentIntroducedGBIF, 2012
NigerPresentIntroducedGBIF, 2012
-Canary IslandsPresentIntroducedGBIF, 2012Tenerife, Canary Islands
UgandaPresentIntroducedGBIF, 2012
ZambiaPresentIntroducedMissouri Botanical Garden, 2012Collected 1996

North America

MexicoPresentIntroducedUSDA-ARS, 2012
USAPresentPresent based on regional distribution.
-FloridaLocalisedIntroduced Invasive Missouri Botanical Garden, 2012; University of South Florida, 2012
-HawaiiPresentIntroduced Invasive USDA-ARS, 2012
-TexasLocalisedIntroducedMissouri Botanical Garden, 2012

Central America and Caribbean

Costa RicaPresentIntroducedUSDA-ARS, 2012
El SalvadorPresentIntroducedUSDA-ARS, 2012
GuatemalaPresentIntroducedUSDA-ARS, 2012
HondurasPresentIntroducedUSDA-ARS, 2012
JamaicaPresentIntroducedHolm et al., 1979; Missouri Botanical Garden, 2012
NicaraguaPresentIntroducedUSDA-ARS, 2012
PanamaPresentIntroducedUSDA-ARS, 2012

South America

BrazilPresentIntroducedUSDA-ARS, 2012
-Minas GeraisPresentIntroducedMissouri Botanical Garden, 2012
-Santa CatarinaPresentIntroducedMissouri Botanical Garden, 2012
ChilePresentPresent based on regional distribution.
-Easter IslandPresentIntroducedPIER, 2012
ColombiaPresentIntroducedUSDA-ARS, 2012
EcuadorPresentIntroducedUSDA-ARS, 2012
GuyanaPresentIntroducedUSDA-ARS, 2012
SurinamePresentIntroducedMissouri Botanical Garden, 2012
VenezuelaPresentIntroducedUSDA-ARS, 2012


SpainPresentPresent based on regional distribution.


AustraliaPresentIntroduced Invasive PIER, 2012
-New South WalesPresentIntroducedWeeds of Australia, 2012
-QueenslandPresentIntroduced Invasive PIER, 2012
-South AustraliaPresentIntroducedWeeds of Australia, 2012
-Western AustraliaPresentIntroducedFlorabase, 2012
Cook IslandsPresentIntroducedPIER, 2012Raratonga Island
FijiPresentIntroduced Invasive PIER, 2012Viti Levu Island
French PolynesiaPresentIntroduced Invasive PIER, 2012Tahiti Island
New CaledoniaPresentIntroducedPIER, 2012
New ZealandPresentIntroduced Invasive PIER, 2012
Norfolk IslandPresentIntroduced Invasive PIER, 2012
Papua New GuineaPresentNativeUSDA-ARS, 2012
SamoaPresentIntroduced Invasive PIER, 2012Upolu Island
Solomon IslandsPresentIntroduced Invasive PIER, 2012

History of Introduction and Spread

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No precise information is available but records suggest introductions prior to 1923 in Australia, 1927 in Madagascar, 1939 in Belize, 1958 in New Zealand, 1964 in Liberia, 1971 in Venezuela, 1976 in Ethiopia, 1983 in Tenerife, 1994 in Uganda and 1996 in Niger and Zambia (GBIF, 2012).

Risk of Introduction

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The risk of introduction continues to be high as it is freely available as an ornamental. Plant Buddy (2012) lists 11 sources. S. palmifolia could thrive in many parts of tropical Africa.


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Found in tropical and subtropical rain forests, wet sclerophyll forests, dry sclerophyll forests, Brigalow forests, sub-humid woodlands, semi-arid shrub woodlands, open forest, margins of thickets, shady path-sides and amongst partly shaded plantation crops such as tea.

Habitat List

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Terrestrial – ManagedCultivated / agricultural land Secondary/tolerated habitat
Managed forests, plantations and orchards Principal habitat
Managed grasslands (grazing systems) Secondary/tolerated habitat
Industrial / intensive livestock production systems Principal habitat
Disturbed areas Principal habitat
Rail / roadsides Principal habitat
Terrestrial ‑ Natural / Semi-naturalNatural forests Secondary/tolerated habitat
Natural grasslands Principal habitat
Riverbanks Principal habitat
Wetlands Principal habitat

Host Plants and Other Plants Affected

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Plant nameFamilyContext
Camellia sinensis (tea)TheaceaeMain
Oryza sativa (rice)PoaceaeMain
Triticum aestivum (wheat)PoaceaeOther

Growth Stages

Top of page Flowering stage, Seedling stage, Vegetative growing stage

Biology and Ecology

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Chromosome number 2n=36 or 54 (Bor, 1960; Flora of China Editorial Committee, 2012; Missouri Botanic Garden, 2012). The meiotic behaviour in some populations of S. palmifolia (n=27) in India was found to be highly abnormal with low pollen fertility (Harpreet Kaur et al., 2011).

Reproductive Biology

The plant may be dispersed as rhizome fragments but the spread of individual plants by rhizome is very limited. Most spread is therefore by seeds which are produced quite abundantly. There is little published, however, on germination requirements or dormancy.

Physiology and Phenology

S. palmifolia is a C4 plant (Ibrahim et al., 2009) but there has been no detailed study of its physiology or phenology. It flowers from August to October in India.


No specific information is available but it is understood to survive for at least 1 year (PIER, 2012).

Environmental Requirements

This is a tropical grass that suffers when temperatures fall below about 4.4ºC (40ºF), and dies to the ground when it freezes. If the roots do not freeze, though, it usually comes back in spring.

Drought tolerance of young plants is low but established clumps may survive moderate drought conditions.  

In China, Zeng XiaoPing et al. (2006) concluded that S. palmifolia had only moderate shade-tolerance, classing it with coffee in this character.


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Af - Tropical rainforest climate Preferred > 60mm precipitation per month
Am - Tropical monsoon climate Preferred Tropical monsoon climate ( < 60mm precipitation driest month but > (100 - [total annual precipitation(mm}/25]))
As - Tropical savanna climate with dry summer Tolerated < 60mm precipitation driest month (in summer) and < (100 - [total annual precipitation{mm}/25])
Aw - Tropical wet and dry savanna climate Tolerated < 60mm precipitation driest month (in winter) and < (100 - [total annual precipitation{mm}/25])
Cf - Warm temperate climate, wet all year Preferred Warm average temp. > 10°C, Cold average temp. > 0°C, wet all year

Latitude/Altitude Ranges

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Latitude North (°N)Latitude South (°S)Altitude Lower (m)Altitude Upper (m)
35 40

Air Temperature

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Parameter Lower limit Upper limit
Absolute minimum temperature (ºC) -12
Mean annual temperature (ºC) 10
Mean maximum temperature of hottest month (ºC) 40
Mean minimum temperature of coldest month (ºC) 5


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ParameterLower limitUpper limitDescription
Dry season duration05number of consecutive months with <40 mm rainfall
Mean annual rainfall5004000mm; lower/upper limits

Rainfall Regime

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Soil Tolerances

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Soil drainage

  • free

Soil reaction

  • acid
  • neutral

Soil texture

  • light
  • medium

Natural enemies

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Natural enemyTypeLife stagesSpecificityReferencesBiological control inBiological control on
Catarhinus palmifolies Predator
Cercospora setariae Pathogen
Meloidogyne Parasite
Phacellium paspali Pathogen
Phyllachora setariicola Pathogen

Notes on Natural Enemies

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Natural enemies of S. palmifolia include the eriophyd mite Catarhinus palmifolies in Taiwan (Huang KunWei, 2005); Phacellium paspali and Cercospora setariae are also reported from Taiwan by Kirschner et al. (2004). The fungus Phyllachora setariicola is also quite widely reported (Cannon, 2001). It is a host of root-knot nematodes (Meloidogyne spp.) in Fiji (Singh et al., 2010). None have been used or tested for biological control.

Means of Movement and Dispersal

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Natural Dispersal (Non-biotic)

No documentation is available but local dispersal is certain to occur by wind and by soil or water movement.

Vector Transmission (Biotic)

Shiels (2011) showed that seeds of S. palmifolia could be dispersed by rats in Hawaii, but less than 15% of the seeds survived the passage through the gut. Presumably domestic livestock could also cause dispersal on a local basis. PIER (2012) indicates dispersal by seed-eating birds.

Accidental Introduction

The seeds are very small and inconspicuous and could readily be introduced as contaminants of other pasture grass seed.

Intentional Introduction

Deliberate introduction continues to be highly probable as this species is widely advertised and made available as an ornamental plant. Several varieties are recognized including some with red foliage.

Pathway Causes

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CauseNotesLong DistanceLocalReferences
Animal production Yes
Escape from confinement or garden escape Yes
Forage Yes
Garden waste disposal Yes
Horticulture Yes Yes
Nursery trade Yes Yes

Pathway Vectors

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VectorNotesLong DistanceLocalReferences
Aircraft Yes
Water Yes
Wind Yes

Impact Summary

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Cultural/amenity Positive
Economic/livelihood Positive and negative
Environment (generally) Negative

Economic Impact

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S. palmifolia is recorded as a weed of transplanted rice in Indonesia, upland rice in Thailand and Vietnam and also in unspecified rice systems in India and Nepal (IRRI, 1989). It can be abundant in tea plantations in Assam and has been recorded in wheat in Kashmir, but there are no data on economic losses or other costs incurred.

Growing wild in Assam, India, it gives fresh fodder yields of about 110.6 t/ha in 4 cuts. In trials with Jersey X Danish Red calves fed S. palmifolia ad lib., average dry matter intake was 2.1 kg/100 kg live-weight. The grass contained 8.8% digestible crude protein (DCP), 579% total digestible nutrients (TDN) and 48.5% starch equivalent. The calves showed positive balance for N, Ca and P (Bora et al., 1990). Protein was considered of good quality (Bradbury et al., 1985).

It is included in a mix of grasses fed to cattle in Sikkim (Das, 2005) and is regarded as an important component of natural pastures for goats in Meghalaya (Singh and Mudgal, 1999). Its nutritive value of was estimated in goats: the grass contained 47.6% TDN, 8.16% DCP and 28% starch equivalent with a nutritive ratio of 1:4.8; however, Gupta and Balaraman (1988) concluded that intake of grass in terms of TDN and minerals were inadequate to meet maintenance requirements of goats.

Environmental Impact

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S. palmifolia is included among the valuable food plants for wildlife in the Mahananda wildlife sanctuary and other wildlife reserves of north Bengal, India (Ghosh, 1994).

S. palmifolia is among the plants posing a specific threat to endangered species Poa mannii and Phyllostegia warshaueri in Hawaii (US Fish and Wildlife Service, 1998; 2010).

PIER (2012) records it as invasive in Australia, New Zealand and on a number of Pacific Islands. Vigorous, monospecific stands of S. palmifolia occur in the Vailima Reserve and the Alaoa area in Samoa (Space and Flynn, 2002). The concern in these cases is mainly regarding threats to natural vegetation rather than to crops.

It is regarded as an environmental weed in Queensland and New South Wales, Australia, but has not been declared or considered noxious by any state government authorities.

Threatened Species

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Threatened SpeciesConservation StatusWhere ThreatenedMechanismReferencesNotes
Phyllostegia warshaueri (Laupahoehoe phyllostegia)NatureServe NatureServe; USA ESA listing as endangered species USA ESA listing as endangered speciesHawaiiCompetition - shadingUS Fish and Wildlife Service, 1998
Poa mannii (Mann's bluegrass)CR (IUCN red list: Critically endangered) CR (IUCN red list: Critically endangered); USA ESA listing as endangered species USA ESA listing as endangered speciesHawaiiCompetition - shadingUS Fish and Wildlife Service, 2010

Risk and Impact Factors

Top of page Invasiveness
  • Invasive in its native range
  • Proved invasive outside its native range
  • Has a broad native range
  • Abundant in its native range
  • Tolerant of shade
  • Long lived
  • Fast growing
  • Has high reproductive potential
  • Has propagules that can remain viable for more than one year
Impact outcomes
  • Ecosystem change/ habitat alteration
  • Monoculture formation
  • Negatively impacts agriculture
  • Negatively impacts forestry
  • Threat to/ loss of endangered species
  • Threat to/ loss of native species
Impact mechanisms
  • Competition - monopolizing resources
  • Competition - shading
  • Rapid growth
Likelihood of entry/control
  • Highly likely to be transported internationally deliberately
  • Difficult to identify/detect as a commodity contaminant


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The main economic use of S. palmifolia is as an ornamental plant. Seed is widely available on the internet and the plant is valued for its robust, striking palm-like foliage. 

It is not clear how often it is deliberately planted as a forage but where it occurs as a natural component of pasture, it regarded as of reasonable value though not as productive as many other species.

S. palmifolia has been used in the past as a human food source (Austin, 2006) and may still be in Papua New Guinea (FAO, 2012). It is also used for medicinal purposes, e.g. by the Mek tribes in Iranian Jaya, New Guinea (Plarre, 1995). In Perak a decoction is drunk for irregular menses and in the Philippines it is mixed with ashes of burned leaves to treat skin disorders (Plants for Use, 2012).

It is also used as shading material in plant nurseries.

Uses List

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Animal feed, fodder, forage

  • Fodder/animal feed

Medicinal, pharmaceutical

  • Traditional/folklore


  • Potted plant
  • Propagation material
  • Seed trade

Similarities to Other Species/Conditions

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It may be confused with Setaria plicata, which is closely-related but a smaller plant. Bor (1960) describes it as much smaller, with leaves only up to 3 cm wide, and panicle no more than 25 cm long and 5 cm wide. S. poiretiana and S. megaphylla have very dense panicles no more than 8 cm long. S. paniculifera is also similar, but with bristles below the spikelet up to 5 times as long as the spikelet.

Prevention and Control

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Physical/Mechanical Control

Small clumps can be dug out but protective clothing may be needed to protect against irritant hairs (Aukland Council, 2012).



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Aukland Council, 2012. Biosecurity.

Austin DF, 2006. Fox-tail millets (Setaria: Poaceae) - abandoned food in two hemispheres. Economic Botany, 60(2):143-158.

Banerjee BC, 1985. On the occurrence of some grasses in Coorg district of Karnataka state. Journal of Economic and Taxonomic Botany, 7(2):479-480.

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Bradbury JH; Hammer B; Nguyen T; Tamate J; Anders M; Millar JS, 1985. Analyses of vegetables from the highlands of Papua New Guinea. Papua New Guinea Medical Journal, 28(2):127-130.

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Chakravartee J, 1994. Weed control in tea. Two and a Bud, 41(1):2-11.

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Ghosh SB, 1994. Fodder grasses of Indian sanctuaries I - identification of grasses, consumed by herbivores, in the Mahananda and other wildlife sanctuaries of North Bengal. Indian Forester, 120(10):946-952; 9 ref.

Gupta HK; Balaraman N, 1988. Nutritive value of dhutesaro (Setaria palmifolia Koenig, Stapf.) for goats. Indian Journal of Animal Research, 22(1):47-48.

Harpreet Kaur; Harbans Singh; Nadeem Mubarik; Santosh Kumari; Gupta RC; Saggoo MIS, 2011. Cytomorphological studies in some species of Setaria L. from different phytogeographical parts of India. Cytologia, 76(3):309-318.

Holm LG; Pancho JV; Herberger JP; Plucknett DL, 1979. A geographical atlas of world weeds. New York, USA: John Wiley and Sons, 391 pp.

Huang KunWei, 2005. Eriophyoid mites of Taiwan: description of seven species of Diptilomiopidae from Hueysuen (Acari: Eriophyoidea). Plant Protection Bulletin (Taipei), 47(3):201-212.

Ibrahim DG; Burke T; Ripley BS; Osborne CP, 2009. A molecular phylogeny of the genus Alloteropsis (Panicoideae, Poaceae) suggests an evolutionary reversion from C4 to C3 photosynthesis. Annals of Botany, 103(1):127-136.

Kirschner R; Piepenbring M; and Chen CJ, 2004. Some cercosporoid hyphomycetes from Taiwan, including a new species of Stenella and new reports of Distocercospora pachyderma and Phacellium paspali. Some cercosporoid hyphomycetes from Taiwan, 17:57-68.

Malik ZH; Hussain F, 1990. The distribution of some weeds in wheat field of Kotli, Azad Kashmir. Sarhad Journal of Agriculture, 6(1):1-4.

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Links to Websites

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GISD/IASPMR: Invasive Alien Species Pathway Management Resource and DAISIE European Invasive Alien Species Gateway source for updated system data added to species habitat list.


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20/09/12 Original text by:

Chris Parker, Consultant, UK

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