Matweed, the Sea, Helme, Sea-reed, or Marram, arunda arenaria, L. an indigenous perennial plant, growing only on the driest sandy shores, and flowering in the month of June or July. This useful reed prevents the wind from dispersing the sand over the contiguous fields, which, by neglecting its propagation by seed, are not unfrequently rendered useless. The Dutch have availed themselves of this advantage; and, for the same reason, Queen Elizabeth wisely prohibited the extirpation of this beneficial vegetable. It is at present cultivated on the Norfolk coast, with a view to prevent the irruption of the sea : the inhabitants of Newborough, in the Isle of Anglesea, manufacture it into mats and ropes, whence they obtain their chief support.— In Denmark, the fibrous roots of the Sea Matweed are employed for making whisk-brushes; and the Icelanders collect and dry the seeds; from which; after reducing them to powder, a palatable bread is prepared, resembling in taste the meal of malt.

Matweed, the Small, Heath-Matweed, or Mat-Grass, nardus stricla, L. an indigenous perennial plant, growing on moist heaths and marshes; flowering from June to August.—It is eaten by horses and goats, but disliked by cows and sheep.

This species is often a troublesome weed, as well on arable lands as on pastures, where it affords but coarse food to cattle as it, however, forms large and thick tufts, which resist the action of the scythe, it may be usefully transplanted to loose sandy lands : in such situations, its spreading horizontal roots greatly tend to consolidate the soil, and increase the stratum of vegetable mould for the reception of more useful plants.-BbchstMN remarks, that it would he advisable to propagate the Small weed in young plantations exposed to cold and bleak winds ; on Account of the protection it might afford to tender trees.