The origin and introduction of Pangola grass Digitaria decumbens (Stent) into the Caribbean islands is described. The rapid spread of this species in cultivation throughout the regions is ascribed to four characteristics which coincided so closely with the economic and technical needs of the region as to override the inherent disadvantages of this grass. Its outstanding characteristics are ease of establishment, vigour, adaptability, palatability and resistance to grazing. The agronomic and nutritional characteristics and the productive potential of Pangola grass are com-pared with other forage species cultivated in the region and with a temperate grass species. These characteristics are discussed in the context of the introduction and evaluation of forage species and the intensification of output from forage crops.