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Labrador and Newfoundland west to British Columbia, south to PA, MI, IA, AZ, CA, and Mexico.
Densely cespitose, slender, errect or ascending, to 80 cm. Leaves 2-3 mm wide or more. Spikes pale green or silvery, the lowest often remote and surpassed by a subtending bract; pistillate scales hyaline or scarious and whitish or pale brown, the midrib greenish and sometimes excurrent, often covering the perigynium but not exceeding it; perigynia mostly 10-25, lance-elliptic to narrowly elliptic, about 1.3-1.6 mm wide and 3-4 times as long as wide, faintly nerved or nerveless on both sides. Achene lenticular, broad, more or less orbicular-obovate, 2-2.5 mm.
Flowers April to June
Wetland indicator: Facultative Upland
Carex bromoides has narrower leaves and more narrow perigynia (0.8-1.2 mm wide and 4-5 times as long as wide) that are strongly nerved on both sides or only weakly nerved ventrally.
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
Swink, F. and G. Wilhelm. 1994. Plants of the Chicago Region.
Indiana Academy of Science. The Morton Arboretum. Lisle, Illinois.
© Michael Hough 2010