Broadleaf carpet grass

Axonopus compressus

Scientific name

Axonopus compressus

Common name

Broadleaf carpet grass

Other names (PBR name, trademark, breeder code)

Buffalo grass (Northern Australia), broadleaf carpet grass, cow grass (Singapore, South-East Asia), tropical carpet grass, tropical turf, carpetgrass.


Broad leaf carpet grass forms a coarse-textured, fairly dense low-growing turf with a distinctive dark green colour. The green leaves have a shiny, waxy appearance, with crinkles in them. It is generally quite shallow rooted, and relatively intolerant of drought. The species spread by short underground rhizomes. If it dries out during the dry season, and then when it rains or it is watered, the older leaves die and do not green up. This gives the lawn a half green – half dead appearance. Broadleaf carpet grass is commonly identified as a weed, especially when found growing among fine-textured turfgrasses like green couch. Broadleaf carpet grass loves the shade and can also grow in full sun. A significant downside is being able to control fine-textured turfgrasses or other broadleaf weeds growing within the carpet grass . It is best adapted to acid, sandy or sandy loam soils of low fertility. Broad leaf carpet grass prefers moist, well watered soils, but not water-logged conditions (Source: Cameron, 2006). If shade is an issue, and the area receives little to no wear (does not like wear), then broadleaf carpet grass may be the option for you.

Other comments

Broadleaf carpet grass does produce some viable seed, but not in commercial quantity. Previously overseas, a slightly broader-leafed genotyoe/variety of Narrowleaf Carpet Grass has been sold as "Broadleaf carpet grass" and it is mistakenly thought that Broadleaf carpet grass is available in commercial supply; this is not the case. Broadleaf carpet grass is sensitive to broadleaf herbicide and therefore is difficult to maintain as a monoculture (single turf sward). Foliage can be green and purple. There was a varigated form of broadleaf carpet grass, 'Whitsunday White' which was protected by Plant Breeder's Rights (PBR) then terminated on 24 Nov 2011, being sold in North Queensland (Loch, 2003).

Pests, disease and weeds
Check to see which Pests, Diseases and or Weeds this turf variety may be susceptible to and how to successfully control them in your home lawn or sports turf.

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Available in Sod/turf
Turf price range (per m2) $5.00 - $14.00
Seed (per kg) $90.00 - $100.00
Use Residential and Parks
Suitable climate classification Subtropical and Tropical
Preferred mowing height 30 mm to 50 mm
Shade tolerance Good
Wear tolerance Poor
Cold tolerance Poor
Heat tolerance Good
Salinity tolerance Poor
Water requirement High
Fertiliser requirement Moderate
Mowing frequency High
Thatch production Low
Website N/A
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References Read more  
  • Cameron, A.G. 2006. Suitable Lawn Grasses for the NT, Northern Territory government Agnote No: A21, pp.4.
  • 'Whitsunday White' was protected by Plant Breeder's Rights (PBR) in Australia (Certificate #2709) by Anthony Richard Henebery on 11 Mar 2005. The protection was terminated on 24 Nov 2011. Read more at and search 'Whitsunday White' in the variety field.
  • Loch, D.S. (2003) Broadleaf carpet grass. Axonopus compressus. 'Whitsunday White'. Plant Varieties Journal 16(4).

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