Vegetative Growth
Flowering Plant

Ribgrass (plantain)


(Plantago Lanceolata)

Ribgrass is a very popular perennial forage herb which is commonly mixed with sheep's parsley, yarrow and burnet to increase diversity and lift trace elements from deep within the soil profile. It can be mixed with regular grassland species to increase grazing quality, and with deep roots it is also popular in mixtures for lighter land. It is also known as Plantain or narrow leaf plantain.


Used in diverse grazing mixtures and occasionally pure stands.


A perennial species, it will persist longer in the sward with good grazing management.


Ribgrass is a mineral rich plant, with deep drought tolerant, soil conditioning roots. It has a high protein content of around 20%, which helps meat and milk production.

Frost Tolerance

Generally frost tolerant.

Sowing Rate Advice

4kg per acre / 10kg per ha.

A particularly small seed, many seeds per kg. occasionally planted as a specialist pure stand sward.

Mixture Sowing Rate Advice

0.1 - 0.2kgs per acre / 0.25 - 0.5kgs per ha.

A small seed, so even at low rates as a mixture component, a reasonable number of plants are seen in the sward.

Ideal Sowing Time

Sow from April until early September.


Heavy trampling or constant grazing could damage the plant in the sward and reduce plant numbers. However it does not have the same woody growth issues as chicory as it matures.

Distinguishing characteristics


The seed is oblong in shape with rounded, curved edges. It varies from a light to dark brown colour. It is less than 2mm in length.


The seedling develops two distinct cotyledons, they are long and thin, much longer than the first true leaf. The first true leaf is lance shaped, tapering to a blunt point, the mid vein starts to become prominent.

Vegetative State

Flowering Plant

Flowering Plant
Generally a dark green colour. The large lanceolate leaves have a number of prominent veins, hence the name of the species. The flower head is a brown to black oblong cylinder, with delicate, white stamens, almost creating a halo effect. The plant grows from a distinct basal rosette of leaves.

Additional Info

Flowers from April - August. Average seeds per kg - 500 000. Average protein content 13-14%.

Works well with

Commonly mixed with sheep's parsley, yarrow and burnet to increase diversity and lift trace elements from deep within the soil profile.

Buy Ribgrass (plantain) Straight

You can find Ribgrass (plantain) in the following mixtures


Most of the plant breeding has been done using New Zealand strains.