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CYPERACEAE SEDGE FAMILY

S. Galen Smith, except as noted

Annual, perennial herb, often rhizomed or stoloned, often of wet open places; roots fibrous; generally bisexual. Stem: generally 3-sided, generally solid. Leaf: generally 3-ranked; base sheathing, sheath generally closed, ligule generally 0; blade (0 or) linear, parallel-veined. Inflorescence: spikelets generally arranged in head-, spike-, raceme-, or panicle-like inflorescences; flower generally sessile in axil of flower bract, enclosed in a sac-like structure (perigynium) or generally not. Flower: small, generally wind-pollinated; perianth 0 or generally bristle like; stamens generally 3, anthers attached at base, 4 chambered; ovary superior, chamber 1, ovule 1, style 2–3-branched. Fruit: achene, 2–3 sided.
± 100 genera, 5000 species: especially temperate. [Ball et al. 2002 FNANM 23:1–608] Difficult; taxa differ in technical characters of inflorescence, fruit. In Carex and Kobresia, what appear to be pistillate flowers in fact are highly reduced inflorescences (whether or not the same applies to staminate flowers is still under debate). In some other works (e.g., FNANM) these are called spikelets, and they are treated as being arranged in spikes. Here and in TJM (1993), what appear to be pistillate flowers are called pistillate flowers in Carex (and they are treated as being arranged in spikelets), but spikelets in Kobresia (and they are treated as being arranged into spikes). Though internally inconsistent, the approach here is consistent with traditional usage, and reflects a preference for character states that may be determined in the field. —Scientific Editors: S. Galen Smith, Thomas J. Rosatti, Bruce G. Baldwin.
Unabridged references: [Tucker 1987 J Arnold Arbor 68:361–445; Bruhl 1995 Australian Syst Bot 8:125–305]

Key to Cyperaceae

ELEOCHARIS SPIKERUSH
Annual, perennial herb, generally forming mats, glabrous, internal air cavities evident; caudex generally 0; rhizomes generally evident, long, scaly, bulb or tuber at tip generally 0. Stem: simple, generally erect, smooth, generally not hollow; tip generally not rooting. Leaf: 2, basal, blades 0 or tooth-like, <= 1 mm. Inflorescence: inflorescence bracts 0; spikelet terminal, 1, generally ovate, not ± flat [(± flat)], generally not forming plantlets, flowers 3–100+; flower bracts spiraled [(2-ranked)], each with 1 flower in axil, generally ovate, generally brown, generally membranous, smooth, tip generally acute to obtuse, notch 0; basal flower bract generally encircling stem, generally < 1/2 spikelet, flower generally 0. Flower: bisexual; perianth parts reduced to bristles, 0–8, generally ± <= fruit, barbs generally recurved; stamens generally 3; style 1, thread-like, base enlarged, generally persistent on fruit as tubercle. Fruit: generally obovate, generally brown; tubercle (0 or) generally distinct, generally pyramidal.
Wetland obligates.
± 200 species: tropics to boreal. (Greek: marsh-dwelling grace) [Smith et al. 2002 FNANM 23:60–120] Eleocharis lanceolata Fernald, Eleocharis equisetoides Torr. not in California.
Unabridged etymology: (Greek heleios, dwelling in a marsh, and Charis, grace)

Key to Eleocharis

E. tenuis (Willd.) Schult. var. tenuis
HISTORICAL WAIF
Perennial herb 5–90 cm; rhizome 0.4–1 mm diam, tough. Stem: 0.2–0.4 mm diam, cylindric or generally 4–5-angled. Leaf: distal sheath firm, persistent, tip obtuse to acute, often with tooth to 0.2 mm. Inflorescence: spikelet 3–6 mm, 1.5–2 mm wide; flower bracts 20–60, 1.5–2.5 mm. Flower: anthers 1–2 mm; stigmas 3. Fruit: 0.6–0.9 mm, 0.5–0.7 mm wide, 3-sided, fine-wrinkled, generally fine-net-like, yellow, brown, green, or yellow-green; perianth bristles 0 or 1–3, <= fruit.
2n=24. Ponds; 10–1100 m. Outer North Coast Ranges; Nova Scotia to South Carolina, Louisiana; naturalized in Germany. [Scirpus tenuis Willd.]
Unabridged note: Incl based ± on 1 California specimen: Sonoma Co., Sebastopol, Sturgeon's Mill, 18 July 1957, Wade Sturgeon s.n. (CAS 407900), det. S.G. Smith 1999; probably brought in with non-native waterlilies by Luther Burbank and Wade Sturgeon of Sonoma Co.
Jul [Online Interchange]

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Citation for the whole project: Jepson Flora Project (eds.) 2013. Jepson eFlora, http://ucjeps.berkeley.edu/IJM.html, accessed on Oct 21 2014
Citation for this treatment: [Author of taxon treatment] 2013. Eleocharis, in Jepson Flora Project (eds.) Jepson eFlora, http://ucjeps.berkeley.edu/cgi-bin/get_IJM.pl?tid=58184, accessed on Oct 21 2014

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Geographic subdivisions indicated for the distribution of Eleocharis tenuis var. tenuis Markers link to CCH specimen records. If the markers are obscured, reload the page [or change window size and reload]. Yellow markers indicate records that may provide evidence for eFlora range revision or may have georeferencing or identification issues.
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map of distribution 1
(Note: any qualifiers in the taxon distribution description, such as 'northern', 'southern', 'adjacent' etc., are not reflected in the map above, and in some cases indication of a taxon in a subdivision is based on a single collection or author-verified occurence).

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Data provided by the participants of the Consortium of California Herbaria.
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CCH collections by month

Duplicates counted once; synonyms included.
Species do not include records of infraspecific taxa.
Blue line denotes eFlora flowering time.