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Products > Lomandra longifolia
Lomandra longifolia - Spiney Headed Mat Rush
Image of Lomandra longifolia
[2nd Image]
Habit and Cultural Information
Category: Grass-like
Family: Dasypogonaceae (~Xanthorrhoeaceae)
Origin: Australia (Australasia)
Evergreen: Yes
Flower Color: Yellow
Bloomtime: Spring
Synonyms: [L. longifolia 'Blue-green Form']
Height: 4-5 feet
Width: 4-6 feet
Exposure: Sun or Shade
Summer Dry: Yes
Deer Tolerant: Yes
Irrigation (H2O Info): Low Water Needs
Winter Hardiness: 10-15 F
Lomandra longifolia (Spiny Headed Mat Rush) - A sturdy evergreen perennial plant that forms a 4 to 5 foot tall by 6 to 7 foot wide tussock with long narrow medium green colored strap-shaped leaves that arch over gracefully and have a toothed leaf tip curiously looking as though cut with pinking shears. In spring into summer, the plants produce interesting small flowers in spiny clusters rising up on spiked that usually don't clear the tops of the foliage these flowers are pleasantly fragrant, particularly in the late afternoon.

Plant in full sun to moderate shade and irrigate regularly to very infrequently seems to tolerate about any condition that can be imagined from wet to dry conditions in full sun or in shade and in Australia has even demonstrated it can used as an indoor plant.

Lomandra longifolia is native to and widespread throughout Australia, from northeastern Queensland south through New South Wales, Victoria, South Australia and the island of Tasmania, where it can be found near the coast to well inland growing on the forest floor or out in the open. The Australian Aboriginal people used the leaves to make nets and baskets and ate the leaf bases.

The genus Lomandra in the past was placed with the Australian Grass Trees in the Xanthorrhoeaceae and then more in its own family, the Lomandraceae, or combined with the cordylines into the Laxmanniaceae, but the most current treatment has placed it in the subfamily Lomandroideae within the large Asparagus family, the Asparagaceae. The name Lomandra is comes from the Greek words "loma" meaning margin and "andros" meaning male and is in reference to a circular margin on the anthers. The specific epithet "longifolia" means long leaves.

San Marcos Growers first introduced Lomandra longifolia into the California nursery trade in 1990 (See our Lomandra History Page) and plants from our nursery were planted in 1992 as an understory to large mature blue gums (Eucalyptus globulus) in the Australian Garden at Lotusland. Those plants still look great in the Lotusland garden today. Kurt Bluemel Nursery received this plant from our nursery and propagated it for use at Disney's Wild Animal Park in Florida. This plant has been reproduced in tissue culture under the name Lomandra longifolia "Blue-green Form". We discontinued growing this plant in 1998 and instead promoted the brighter green Lomandra hystrix 'Gary's Green', which at that time we incorrectly believed remained a much smaller plant. As this original Lomandra longifolia was still a good looking plant with a long track record or sustainability at Lotusland and in our own garden, we decided to grow it once again in 2019. 

This information about Lomandra longifolia displayed is based on research conducted in our horticultural library and from reliable online resources. We also will relate observations made about it as it grows in our nursery gardens and other gardens we have visited, as well how the crops have performed in containers in our nursery field. We will also incorporate comments that we receive from others and we welcome hearing from anyone with additional information, particularly if they can share any cultural information that would aid others in growing it.