• It grows mostly in clay and loam soil in moist places.
• Often a weed in gardens, cultivated lands and on roadsides.
General: An erect or bent perennial tufted grass with short rhizomes. Grows up to 1,5 m high.
Leaves: Leaf blades are flat. Rachis flat with the midrib raised on one side.
Flowers: Inflorescence loose and flexible with 4 - 5 one-sided racemes. It has tufts of white hairs where the racemes join the central axis. November - February.
Dallis grass is susceptible to Claviceps paspali infestation; a dark coloured poisonous fungus that thrives on the spikelets and form hard, brownish bodies known as sclerotia or ergots.
Central nervous system.
• The staggers syndrome occurs predominantly in cattle.
• Clinical signs usually appear 2 to 7 days after grazing on infected grass
- tremors and
- incoordination, which become more pronounced with exercise.
• Severely affected animals may become recumbent and show typical
• Appetite remains good and animals almost invariably recover after being removed from toxic pastures.
No pathological changes have been described.
Remove from infected pasture and allow to recover.
Colour photos. Final web-ready size: JPEG. Photo 1: 8.76 kb, 96 ppi; Photo 2: 35.3 kb, 96 ppi; Photo 3: 12.4 kb, 96 ppi; Photo 4: 7.66 kb, 72 ppi; Photo 5: 98.3 kb, 96 ppi. Original TIFF file housed at the Dept. of Paraclinical Sciences, Section Pharmacology and Toxicology, University of Pretoria.