Kangaroo grass is one of the most recognisable members of the grass family Poaceae here in Australia, found in all states and territories.
It is a tufted perennial that can grow to 1.5 m tall and 0.5 m across. The leaves are 10-50 cm long and 2-5 mm wide, green to grey, drying to an orange brown in summer. The flowering period is from December to February.
Before the colonisation of Australia by the British, kangaroo grass was harvested by our First Nation peoples. The leaves and stems were made in to string, the basis for fishing nets for example. The grains were harvested and ground into flour and porridge; the flour was used to make a traditional bread, said to have a nutty flavour. Evidence has been found of this food production occurring as far back as 30,000 years ago.
It serves as a food source for several bird species.
''Themeda triandra'' is a perennial tussock-forming grass widespread in Africa, Australia, Asia and the Pacific. In Australia it is commonly known as kangaroo grass and in East Africa and South Africa it is known as red grass and red oat grass or as ''rooigras'' in Afrikaans. It does not do well under heavy grazing pressure, but benefits from occasional fire.