Northern Prairie Wildlife Research Center
Northeast Wetland Flora
Field Office Guide to Plant Species
Carex torta Boott
- Family: Sedge (Cyperaceae)
- Flowering: May-July
- Field Marks: The field marks of this sedge are the separate slender male and female spikes,
the purple-margined female scales, and the twisted perigynia.
- Habitat: In flowing streams.
- Habit: Perennial herb from thickened rhizomes, forming dense clumps.
- Stems: Upright, branched or unbranched, slender, sharply triangular, smooth except near
the top, up to 3 feet tall.
- Leaves: Elongated, deep green, flat, soft, up to 1/4 inch across.
- Flowers: Male and female borne in separate spikes, the male spike usually solitary, slender,
to 2 inches long, the female spikes 2-6, crowded to remote, up to 4 inches long, up to
1/3 inch thick, the lowermost sometimes on drooping stalks.
- Sepals: 0.
- Petals: 0.
- Stamens: 3.
- Pistils: Borne in a perigynium, the perigynium narrowly ovoid, up to 1/6 inch long, usually
twisted in the upper half, smooth, tapering to a short beak; each perigynium subtended by a
round-tipped scale purple on the sides and green in the center; stigmas 2.
- Fruits: Achenes lenticular, about 1/8 inch long.
- Notes: The achenes are eaten by waterfowl.
Previous Species -- Upright Sedge (Carex stricta)
Return to Species List -- Group 3
Next Species -- Hairy-fruit Sedge (Carex trichocarpa)