FESCUE SEDGE
File Size: 73 KB
 
Carex brevior   (Dewey ) Mack.
Tallgrass Prairie National Preserve, Chase County, Kansas
Perennial
Height: 1 - 3 feet tall
Family: Cyperaceae - Sedge Family
Flowering Period:   April, May
Culms: Erect, stiff, sharply triangular, angles rough or smooth, bases of old leaves often persisting.
Leaves: Blades 3-6, flat, ascending, shorter than culms, less than 1/6 inch wide, firm, pale green, glabrous; margins rough.
Sheaths: Tight, inner surfaces with narrow transparent band.
Inflorescences: To 2 inches long, spikes 3-10, crowded or separated, sessile, egg-shaped to nearly round, 1/4 to 3/5 inch long, green, bisexual, pistillate flowers above staminate flowers; lowest bract bristle-like, upper bracts scale-like; pistillate scales lanceolate; tips pointed; perigynia 8-20 per spike, round, green, outer face strongly nerved, inner face nerveless; beaks 2-toothed; margins winged.
Fruits: Achenes, lens-shaped, yellowish brown, 1-seeded; stigmas 2, reddish brown.
Habitat: Sandy prairies, meadows, ditches, and woodlands, most abundant in dry, disturbed areas.
Distribution: Throughout Kansas.
Comments: Carex brevior closely resembles Carex molesta. The 2 species occasionally intergrade.

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