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Northern Prairie Wildlife Research Center

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Aquatic and Wetland Vascular Plants of the Northern Great Plains

62. Cyperaceae, the Sedge Family

2. Carex L. -- Sedge

28. Carex hystericina Muhl. ex Willd. -- Bottlebrush sedge


Tufted, often in large clumps, with short rhizomes; culms erect or leaning, trigonous, 2-10 dm long, usually surpassing the leaves. Leaves yellow-green, 3-8 mm wide; sheaths white-hyaline ventrally, green to yellowish or reddish dorsally, the lower sheaths eventually breaking into filaments. Spikes unisexual, the terminal one staminate, 1-5 cm long, usually short-peduncled and often subtended by a bract; lateral spikes pistillate or occasionally slightly androgynous, 1-4, short-cylindric, 1-5 cm long, 0.8-1.5 cm thick, separate or aggregate, the lower ones usually nodding on filiform peduncles, the upper ones shorter-peduncled and ascending; pistillate scales inconspicuous, narrow and much shorter than the perigynia, rough-awned. Perigynia spreading or ascending, greenish-stramineous, nearly terete at maturity, ovoid, 5-7.5 mm long, strongly 12- to 17-nerved, abruptly contracted to the slender beak which is ca. 1/2 the total length of the perigynium; beak teeth 0.4-1 mm long, erect or nearly so; achenes trigonous with concave sides, 1.4-1.7 mm long; stigmas 3. Jun--Jul. Shores, stream banks, wet meadows, springs, swamps and fens; common in the e part, the Sand Hills and Black Hills, otherwise less common w; (N.B. to WA, s to VA, KY, AR, TX, NM and CA).
GIF- Species Photo/Drawing
GIF- Distribution Map

Map key

Carex hystericina (from Hermann 1970).  

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