Northern Prairie Wildlife Research Center
Aquatic and Wetland Vascular Plants of the Northern Great Plains
62. Cyperaceae, the Sedge Family
1. Bulbostylis Kunth.
1. Bulbostylis capillaris (L.) Clarke
Small tufted annual 0.5-3(4) dm tall; culms usually many, capillary,
usually much surpassing the leaves, longitudinally ribbed, scaberulous. Leaves
mainly basal, the blades short, filiform, to 0.5 mm wide. Inflorescence
of (1)2-5 or more spikelets in a capitate or umbelliform cluster usually less
than 1 cm long, with 1 spikelet sessile and the others pedicellate; involucral
bracts 2-3, filiform, the largest usually surpassing the inflorescence;
spikelets few- to several-flowered, ovoid-oblong, 3-8 mm long; scales
all or nearly all subtending a flower, spirally arranged, dark reddish-brown
with a strong green midrib and membranous margins, ovate, 1.5-2 mm long, blunt-tipped,
puberulent, often deciduous before the achene. Flowers perfect; perianth
none; stamens 2; styles 3-cleft, barely exsert, with a swollen
base that persists on the achene as a tubercle. Achene ivory to tan,
obovoid-trigonous, 0.8-1 mm long, cross-rugulose on the faces; tubercle
minute, mammillate, darker than the achene body and distinct from it. Late Jun--Sep.
Sandy shores, stream banks and alluvial bars; uncommon in c and e NE; (ME and
s Que. to MN and NE s to FL, TX and w to CA; also n Mex. and Cuba).
Return to Family -- Cyperaceae - The
Next Section -- Carex alopecoidea Tuckerm.