Carex exilis Dewey - Coastal Sedge


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Carex exilis - (image 1 of 6)



Family: Cyperaceae


Section Stellulatae


Bogs and fens.




Labrador and Newfoundland to DE and MD, west to Ontario, northern MI, and northern MN; disjunct in NC and MS.


Tufted perennial; stems smooth, stiff, 20-70 cm, usually surpassing the leaves; leaves slender, involute; spike usually solitary, 0.8-2.5(-4) cm, gynaecandrous or unisexual; lateral spikes 1-2 and much smaller, if present; lower 2 scales empty and erect; anthers 2-3.5 mm; pistillate scales ovate, about equaling the body of the perigynium, usually acute, red-brown with hyaline margins; perigynia 2.6-4.7 mm long, at least the lower ones spreading or reflexed, brownish, planoconvex, ovate, spongy-thickened at the base, with up to 15 faint nerves dorsally and up to 7 ventrally, the beak serrulate-margined and 1/5 to 2/3 as long as the body; achene lenticular.


Fruiting late May to July

Wetland indicator: OBL

This species differs from other members of section Stellulatae in that the culms usually have only a single spike rather than 2-8. It also has involute leaves and anthers averaging more than 2.2 mm.


Gleason, Henry A. and A. Cronquist. 1991. Manual of Vascular Plants of Northeastern United States and Adjacent Canada. Second Ed.
The New York Botanical Garden. Bronx, NY




Michael Hough 2018