Ehrharta calycina

Ehrharta calycina_purple veldtgrass_ JM Di Tomaso
Photo courtesy Joseph DiTomaso

Synonyms: Aira capensis L.f., Ehrharta ascendens Schrad, E. auriculata Steud., E. geniculata (Thunb) Thunb., E. laxiflora Schrad., R. ovata Nees, E. paniculataSw.ex Poir, E. undulata Nees ex Trin., Melica festucoides Licht ex Trin., Melica geniculata Thunb., Trochera calycina (Sm. P. Beauv,)

Common names: purple veldtgrass; African veldtgrass; perennial Veldt grass

Ehrharta calycina (purple veldtgrass) is a perennial grass (family Poaceae) found in disturbed grasslands, roadsides and coastal habitats in California’s south and central west regions. Purple veldtgrass is spreading very rapidly in the central coast region, where it invades dunes and shrublands. It was originally imported to California for use as a pasture grass and for erosion control. Purple veldtgrass displaces native vegetation and converts coastal scrub and chaparral communities to grasslands. It resprouts after fires and may increase fire frequency.

Rating: High

Cal-IPC Resources

  • Plant Assessment Form - Information gathered by Cal-IPC on the impacts, rate of spread, and distribution of invasive plants in California. Does not include management information.
  • CalWeedMapper - Statewide maps, climate models, and reports.
  • Cal-IPC News - Our quarterly newsletter. Each issue is available as a pdf.
  • Cal-IPC Symposium Proceedings - Presentations and papers from our annual Symposium.
  • Don't Plant a Pest! - Select your region to find non-invasive alternatives to ornamental species. Also see our statewide brochure on trees.

Other Resources

Symposium Presentations

  • Thomsen, C. D., W. A. Williams, et al. (1996). Yellow starthistle management with grazing, mowing, and competitive plantings. California Exotic Pest Plant Council Symposium '96. San Diego, CA.

Cal-IPC News Articles

  • Brey, C. (1996). What? Another Ehrharta? Oh, no! CalEPPC News. 4: 4-5.