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Aquatic and Wetland Vascular Plants of the Northern Great Plains

62. Cyperaceae, the Sedge Family

2. Carex L. -- Sedge

4. Carex athrostachya Olney


Densely tufted, lacking rhizomes; culms trigonous, 1.5-10 dm long. Leaves shorter than the culms, 1.5-4 mm wide, the lowest leaves bladeless; sheaths hyaline ventrally, brownish-tinged at the base. Spikes several, bisexual, gynaecandrous, 4-10 mm long, borne in ovoid to globose-ovoid heads 1-2 cm long; 1-3 of the lowest bracts below the inflorescence prolonged beyond the head, occasionally merely equaling the head, other bracts reduced and inconspicuous; pistillate scales brownish except for the green midrib, longer to shorter than the perigynia, acute to cuspidate. Perigynia flattened to slightly plano-convex, narrowly ovate to lanceolate, 2.5-4.5 mm long, ca. 3X longer than wide, faintly several-nerved dorsally, fewer nerved or nerveless ventrally, wing-margined to the base, the beak obliquely cut, serrulate below; achenes lenticular, 1.1-1.6 mm long; stigmas 2. Jul--Aug. Wet meadows and low prairie; uncommon in nc and nw ND; (ND and Sask. to AK, s to CO and CA).
GIF- Distribution Map

Map key


Previous Section -- Carex atherodes Spreng. -- Slough sedge
Return to Family -- Cyperaceae - The Sedge Family
Next Section -- Carex aurea Nutt. -- Golden sedge

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