Common name: tall sedge
Carex appressa R.Br. APNI*
Description: Rhizome short; shoots densely tufted. Culms erect, triquetrous above, may be subterete below, scabrous above, 40–120 cm long, 2–4 mm diam.
Leaves shorter than to equalling culms; blade 2–12 mm wide; sheath grey-brown; ligule rounded to truncate.
Inflorescence erect, narrow, 4–45 cm long, compound, with numerous short spikes solitary at nodes or on appressed spike-like secondary branches to 3 cm long; lowest involucral bract very short. Spikes sessile, contiguous, erect to spreading at maturity, to 1 cm long; all spikes androgynous. Glumes acute, occasionally shortly mucronate, yellow-brown, occasionally with white margins near apex; female glumes 2–2.5 mm long. Perigynia (utricles) ovoid, with thickened truncate base, several-nerved, 2–3 mm long, 1.0–1.7 mm diam., hispid on narrowly winged or ribbed margins, greenish brown to dark yellow-brown; beak c. 1 mm long, with apex 2-fid. Anthers 1.5–2 mm long excluding appendage c. 0.2 mm long. Style 2-fid.
Nut ovoid, lenticular in cross section, yellow-brown.
Distribution and occurrence: All regions except NFWP and SFWP; all States except N.T.; N.G., N.Z., N.Cal.
Widespread in damp places.
NSW subdivisions: NC, CC, SC, NT, CT, ST, NWS, CWS, SWS, NWP, SWP
Other Australian states: Qld Vic. Tas. W.A. S.A.
Leaves are often prominently septate-nodulose, as in the related C. declinata. The beak of the perigynium (utricle) is hispid on the margins and shorter than in C. declinata. There are probably several taxa currently included under this name. This species grows with C. tereticaulis in some places, and they hybridise there.
Text by K. L. Wilson (1993; edited Aug 2011, July 2016)
Taxon concept: Flora of NSW 4 (1993)
APNI* Provides a link to the Australian Plant Name Index (hosted by the Australian National Botanic Gardens) for comprehensive bibliographic data
***The AVH map option provides a detailed interactive Australia wide distribution map drawn from collections held by all major Australian herbaria participating in the Australian Virtual Herbarium project.