Small Carpetgrass, Arthraxon Grass, Join-head Grass
Small Carpetgrass (Arthraxon hispidus) is a monocot (Poaceae) native to Japan and eastern Asia and thought to have been introduced to North America either accidentally or during immigration. Arthraxon Grass reproduces via voluminous seed production; seeds are dispersed both mechanically and aquatically. It is a highly invasive plant in parts of the eastern and mid-western United States, especially in wet habitats. This plant can overwhelm the surrounding vegetation.
Small Carpetgrass is an extremely aggressive grass that forms dense infestations. Seeds are spread by animals and also spread by water during flood events. The grass has distinctive, heart-shaped leaves that clasp the stem and that have a notably hairy edge. It flowers in the fall, producing mass amounts of tiny seeds. A surreptitious invader of floodplains, stream corridors and wetlands, Arthraxon Grass often co-occurs and even outcompetes other invasive plants such as Japanese Stiltgrass (Microstegium vimineum). In North Carolina, Arthraxon Grass has been observed across all ecoregions, but has notable concentrations in the northern Piedmont.
Fact Sheet: Small Carpetgrass, Anthraxon Grass