Northern Prairie Wildlife Research Center
Western Wetland Flora
Field Office Guide to Plant Species
Scirpus microcarpus J. & K. Presl
- Family: Sedge (Cyperaceae)
- Flowering: June-August
- Field Marks: The flower clusters are subtended by several leaf-like bracts that are unequal in size, spikelets 1/6-1/3 inch long and arranged in clusters, and scales that lack an awned tip.
- Habitat: Along streams, wet ditches, marshes.
- Habit: Perennial herb with long, stout rhizomes.
- Stems: Upright, triangular, stout, smooth, up to 5 feet tall.
- Leaves: Several, alternate, elongated, narrow, usually rough along the edges, up to 3/4 inch wide; sheaths tinged with red or purple.
- Flowers: Borne in spikelets, with several spikelets in clusters, some of the clusters
sometimes sessile, others on long stalks, subtended by several leafy bracts of different lengths; each spikelet 1/6-1/3 inch long.
- Scales: Ovate, pointed but not awned at the tip, black or greenish black; bristles 4-6.
- Sepals: 0.
- Petals: 0.
- Stamens: 3.
- Pistils: Ovary superior; style 2-cleft.
- Fruits: Achenes pale, lenticular, smooth, 1/16-1/20 inch long.
- Notes: The achenes are eaten by waterfowl.
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