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, esparto grass
any of various grasses, esp Stipa tenacissima of S Europe and N Africa, that yield a fibre used to make ropes, mats, etc.



(Stipa tenacissima), a perennial grass of the family Gramineae. In Spain and North Africa, esparto forms a dense cover over extensive areas of land. The leaves contain a strong fiber and are used in the production of paper and synthetic silk and other fabrics. Esparto is good pasturage for camels, horses, and oxen. It is exported to some countries in Europe.

References in periodicals archive ?
Women still spin and card wool, weave woollen shawls and make mats and baskets from esparto grass.
Steppes of the other esparto grass, albardine (Lygeum spartum), sometimes occupy a dynamic stage intermediate between esparto scrub and shrubland.
112 Changes in the area of esparto grass in northern Africa and the esparto plant biomass in the arid areas of Algeria under a grazing regime.
These cheeses are very similar in appearance to their more famous cousin Manchego, complete with the customary zigzag pattern around the sides, a leftover from the traditional esparto grass straps used to bind the cheese, and the wheat ear pattern stamped on the top and bottom.
Of course not all substitutes for rags and their processes attracted the same attention, and from the 1850s, efforts tended to focus on the two most likely substitutes to rags: wood and esparto grass.
They had, however, made significant headway with the use of esparto grass.
La Serena is formed into one-kilo disks that have a golden-yellow natural rind, and bear the imprint around the sides of the plaited esparto grass molds that hold the curds while they drain and set up.
Her company's new Tradition Bond paper is 10 percent hemp, 10 percent esparto grass, 60 percent agricultural by-products (like cotton and flax), and 20 percent post-consumer recycled fibers.
Originally, the pattern was created by the esparto grass straps used to form the fresh Manchego.