Northern Prairie Wildlife Research Center
Aquatic and Wetland Vascular Plants of the Northern Great Plains
62. Cyperaceae, the Sedge Family
5. Elocharis R. Br. -- Spikesedge, spikerush
8. Eleocharis rostellata (Torr.) Torr.
Tufted perennial from a stout, erect rootstock, without creeping rhizomes; culms
wiry, compressed above, mostly 4-10 dm long, 1-1.4 mm wide, the longer ones
occasionally arching and rooting at the tip; sheaths firm, brown, truncate to
oblique at the summit. Spikelets ovoid to oblong-lanceolate, 6-17 mm
long, 2.5-4.5 mm thick; sterile basal scale 1; floriferous scales
10-20 or more, pale to dull brown with hyaline margins, 3-5 mm long; perianth
bristles about equaling the achene (including tubercle); styles trifid.
Achenes olivaceous to brown, trigonous-obovoid, 1.9-3 mm long including
the tubercle, ca. 1/2 as wide; tubercle confluent with the achene body
and beaklike, light green to brownish, ca. 1/3 the length of the achene. Jul--Sep.
Calcareous wet meadows, seeps and stream margins, often associated with mineral
springs; uncommon and localized, sw SD and sw NE; (N.S. to B.C., s to FL, TX
and n Mex.; also S.Amer.).
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