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Wetland Plants and Plant Communities of Minnesota and Wisconsin


(Juncus tenuis Willd.)

Slender rush

RUSH FAMILY (Juncaceae)


FIELD CHARACTERISTICS: Perennial, grass-like plant, stems more or less cespitose and 1-8 dm. in height. Leaves all basal, 1-3 dm. long, flat and 11.5 mm. wide, becoming involute or merely narrowly channeled on the upper side. Leaves are a third to half the height of the stems. Inflorescence terminal, modified leaves subtending the inflorescence 1-10 cm. long often surpassing the inflorescence, but not appearing as a continuation of the stem. Flowers composed of a star-like pattern of 6 tepals [3 sepals + 3 petals that are similar in color and size (2.8-5.5 mm. long)] surrounding a capsule 2.6-4.2 mm. long. Capsule is many-seeded. Seeds tiny, 0.3-0.5 mm. long.

Slender rush
Figure 27

ECOLOGICAL NOTES: A very common rush of inland fresh meadows and all sorts of exposed moist soils including farmed wetlands and wetland mitigation sites. Gleason and Cronquist (1991) lump J. dudleyi and J. interior under J. tenuis. However, some authorities (e.g., Swink and Wilhelm 1994) consider these species to be separate and distinct. Also known as path rush.

SOURCE: Gleason and Cronquist (1991); Swink and Wilhelm (1994); Voss (1972); and Great Plains Flora Association (1991).

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