Erect kerosene grass (Aristida holathera) in the Western Australian rangelands

Page last updated: Friday, 9 July 2021 - 11:18am

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Erect kerosene grass (Aristida holathera) is one of many plant species found in the Western Australian rangelands.

This page provides a summary of the plant's value for pastoralism. Pastoral lessees and station managers can use this information to assess pasture condition and trend.

Indicator value

Erect kerosene grass is an indicator of poor pasture condition where it is dominant. It is considered to be an undesirable species. It tends to be an increaser on light soils because it will increase relative to more-desirable perennial grasses as they decline under heavy grazing.

Forage value

Erect kerosene grass is unpalatable to livestock at all stages of its growth.


Pindan, red soils.

General description

Erect kerosene grass is a sparse, erect, short-lived perennial grass that can grow to 30–60cm tall, forming loose tussocks. The leaves are long and flat but tend to curl or twist with age. The seeds occur in narrow seed heads up to 60cm long. Each seed has 3 slender, unequal brown awns attached by a spirally twisted column to the seed spike which has a sharp point. The awns are about 2–6cm long.