Elegia tectorum - Cape Thatching Reed / Restio / Ornamental Grass - Indigenous grass - 10 Seeds

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This restio makes an attractive garden plant, and can be used for thatching. Elegia tectorum has an upright, symmetrical, tufted reed-like appearance with thin, dark green stems topped with dark brown flowers in slender compact spikes in autumn. It is usually about 1 m tall and may reach up to 1.5 m in height with a spread of up to 2-3 m. Like all members of the Restio family, Elegia tectorum has male and female flowers on separate plants. The flowers are small and are borne in compound loosely branched inflorescences. Female flowers are protected by golden brown bracts. The Cape thatching reed flowers in autumn (from March to April) and flowering lasts for about 4 weeks. In nature, restios are mostly found in the Western Cape fynbos region where they occur together with proteas, pincushions, Erica's and other fynbos species. Elegia tectorum occurs naturally in marshes and seeps on deep sand in the Western and Eastern Cape extending from Clanwilliam to Port Elizabeth. Restios are best grown from seed and since the seed in many species is very fine, it needs to be handled carefully. Treatment with smoke greatly increases the germination rate of this and many other species of Restionaceae. The main requirements for growing restios successfully are full sun, a well-drained soil and plenty of air movement. The plants adapt to a large variety of soil types. The best time for planting restios is at the beginning of the rainy season, as the plants need regular watering during the first six weeks to two months after planting. After this initial period the plants can survive with very little additional watering. They may be fed with standard organic fertilizers. Restios will respond to regular watering by showing more robust growth, but they are essentially plants which are adapted to a long dry season.

For the best germination results with these seeds we recommend treating these seeds with Cape Seed Primer.

USDA Zone - 8

Season to Sow - Autumn / Spring