Northern Prairie Wildlife Research Center
Western Wetland Flora
Field Office Guide to Plant Species
Scirpus maritimus L.
- Family: Sedge (Cyperaceae)
- Flowering: June-September
- Field Marks: This bulrush is distinguished by its stout growth form and its large spikelets densely crowded in an usually sessile cluster at the tip of the stem.
- Habitat: Wet meadows, marshes, around ponds, particularly in alkaline habitats.
- Habit: Stout perennial with rhizomes and tubers.
- Stems: Upright, triangular, usually unbranched, up to 5 feet tall, without hairs.
- Leaves: Alternate, elongated, flat, up to 1/2 inch wide, without hairs.
- Flowers: Several crowded into spikelets, usually the sessile spikelets densely clustered at the tip of the stem; spikelets rounded at the tip, up to 1 inch long, up to 1/2 inch thick, subtended by 2-4 leaf-like bracts of different lengths; scale
- Sepals: 0.
- Petals: 0.
- Stamens: 3.
- Pistils: Ovary superior; styles 2.
- Fruits: Achenes lenticular, up to 1/6 inch long, with a minute point at the tip and with a few short bristles at the base.
- Notes: The large achenes are eaten by waterfowl.
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