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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

5. Elocharis R. Br. -- Spikesedge, spikerush

1. Eleocharis acicularis (L.) R. & S. -- Needle spikesedge

Low, tufted, mat-forming perennial from filiform rhizomes; culms filiform, 3-10(20) cm long, scarcely flattened, angled by longitudinal grooves, 0.1-0.5 mm thick, rigid when emersed, flexuous and not flowering when submersed; sheaths mostly reddish at the base, membranous, oblique at the summit, often splitting with age. Spikelets ovoid, 3-5(8) mm long, 1-1.5 mm thick; scales rather few, all floriferous, pale green, mostly marked with reddish or purplish-brown, ovate-lanceolate, with broad scarious margins, ca. 2 mm long; perianth of a few bristles or none; styles trifid. Achenes gray, with several longitudinal ridges and numerous fine crosslines, nearly terete, 0.7-0.9 mm long, ca. 1/2 as wide; tubercle turbinate to conic, 1/4 as long as the achene, constricted where attached to the achene. Jun--early Sep. Exposed mud or sand, or in shallow water of shores, stream banks, marshes and springs; common; (Circumboreal, in N.Amer. s to FL, LA and Mex.).
GIF- Distribution Map

Map key

Previous Section -- Dulichium arundinceum (L.) Britt. -- Three-way sedge
Return to Family -- Cyperaceae - The Sedge Family
Next Section -- Eleocharis compressa Sulliv. -- Flatstem spikesedge

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