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Products > Neyraudia reynaudiana
Neyraudia reynaudiana - Burma Reed

[2nd Image]
Habit and Cultural Information
Category: Grass
Family: Poaceae (Gramineae) (Grasses)
Origin: China (Asia)
Evergreen: Yes
Flower Color: Silver
Bloomtime: Summer/Fall
Synonyms: [Neyraudia , Hort]
Height: 8-12 feet
Width: Spreading
Exposure: Sun or Shade
Irrigation (H2O Info): Medium Water Needs
Winter Hardiness: 20-25 F
Neyraudia reynaudiana (Paul's China Mystery Grass) A large upright grass that spreads slowly on short rhizomes and grows to 6 to 15 feet tall, with ultimate size dependent on cultural conditions such as soil, fertilizer and irrigation practices. It has attractive 1/2 inch thick blue-green stem culms (looking a bit like a bamboo) that have nodes spaced about every 6 inches along the culm and with 1 foot long narrow green leaves held rise upright along the stems. In late summer appear many attractive flower plumes that rise vertically well above the foliage with branchlets bearing tiny shimmering flowers attractively arching over. An attractive large upright growing grass then lends a bit of the tropics to the garden. It has been called Burma Reed, Silk Reed, Cane Grass and False Reed and is native to subtropical Indomalaya, the biogeographical regions that extend from Afghanistan east through the Indian subcontinent, Southeast Asia, lowland southern China, Indonesia and the island north of the Wallace line. It is known to grow in bogs, open savannahs, upland cliffs, forest margins and roadsides from sea level to altitudes of 6,500 feet. The name for the genus is an anagram of Reynaudia, a genus of grass from Cuba. The specific epithet is likewise a reference to plants in this similarly looking genus. The earliest introduction of this grass into the US came as seed sent as Neyraudia madagascariensis in 1915 to the USDA Bureau of Plant Industry (as accession 42528) by the Scottish Botanist Andrew Gage, the Superintendent of the Royal Botanic Garden in Calcutta (now Kolkata) who had collected it in Sibpur India. It was planted as early as 1916 in Florida, Georgia and California but only the plants in southern Florida persisted from this early introduction. In areas around Miami it has naturalized as a roadside weed and is a listed noxious weed in the state of Florida. Neyraudia arundinacea, a related species from Madagascar, has been reported in California and Florida but this in now considered to misidentifications of Neyraudia reynaudiana. We first received this plant in 1995 from John Greenlee who had received the plant as an unidentified grass that Landscape Architect Paul Comstock had found in China. For many years this plant was just identified as Paul's China Mystery Grass. We have long had a plant growing in a large cement pot behind our office that many people have asked us about and in 2016 finally divided it and put up a small crop.  Information on this page is based on research conducted in our nursery library, from online sources, as well as from observations made of this plant as it grows in our nursery, in the nursery's garden and in other gardens where we have observed it. We also will incorporate comments received from others and welcome getting feedback of any kind from those who have additional information, particularly if this information is contrary to what we have written or includes additional cultural tips would aid others in growing Neyraudia reynaudiana.