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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

40. Carex praegracilis W. Boott -- Clustered field sedge


Colonial from long black rhizomes; culms arising singly or few together, trigonous, 1.5-7 dm long, surpassing the leaves. Leaves 2-3 mm wide, coming off the lower portion of the culm; sheaths white-hyaline ventrally, truncate at the summit, ligule inconspicuous. Spikes bisexual and androgynous or nearly all staminate or pistillate, 4-8 mm long, the upper ones crowded, the lower ones more separated, in narrowly ovoid to linear-oblong heads 1-4 cm long; bracts obsolete; pistillate scales brown, shiny, shorter than to equaling the perigynia. Perigynia greenish-brown to eventually blackish-brown, plano-convex, ovate to ovate-lanceolate, (2.5)3-4 mm long, ca. 1/3 as wide, sharp-edged, nerveless ventrally, obscurely few- to many-nerved dorsally, spongy at the base, tapering into the serrulate beak which is 1/2 or more the length of the body, obliquely cut; achenes lenticular, 1.2-1.8 mm long; stigmas 2. Jun--Aug. Wet meadows, low prairie, shores, stream banks, ditches and other wet or moist places; very common; (n MI to Yuk., s to MO, OK, n Mex. and CA).
GIF- Species Photo/Drawing
GIF- Distribution Map

Map key

Carex praegracilis (from Hermann 1970).  

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