The largest type of hard spinifex, it typically grows to 1.5m in height and spreads 2m across, although plants stretching to 6m wide have been noted. It is distinguished by its bluish-green foliage which is very stiff with a sharply pointed tip and can reach 25cm in length. It does not form rings as some other species of spinifex do.
The plant was usually avoided by Aboriginal people but can be quite attractive when the flower and seed heads sway about in the breeze during the warmer months.
Most often found north of the MacDonnell Ranges in calcareous areas on rocky hills or gentle slopes liable to flooding. It is thought that the elusive night parrot tunnels through this spinifex to avoid predation.
Where to find this plant at Alice Springs Desert Park
This grass can be found in the Desert Rivers and Woodland habitats. Desert Rivers features a subhabitat for the bull spinifex plant community.
Jessop, J. (ed), 1981. Flora of Central Australia, A. H. & A. W. Reed Pty Ltd, Sydney
Latz, P., 2004. Bushfires and Bushtucker, IAD Press, Alice Springs
Lazarides, M., 1970. The Grasses of Central Australia, Cathay Press, Hong Kong