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Rhynchospora brownii Roem. & Schult.
Family Cyperaceae
Common name: Grassy Beak-sedge

Rhynchospora brownii Roem. & Schult. APNI*

Synonyms: Rhynchospora laxa R.Br. APNI*

Description: Slender shortly rhizomatous perennial.

Culms trigonous, smooth or slightly scabrous above, noded, 30–90 cm high, c. 1.5 mm diam. Leaves flat or canaliculate, 2–4 mm wide.

Inflorescence panicle-like, narrow, consisting of 3–5 distant, dense to rather loose partial inflorescences with branches very unequal; involucral bracts from as long as the partial inflorescence in their axils to reaching the next higher node. Spikelets terete, 2- or 3-flowered, (3–)4–6 mm long; flowers bisexual, upper one(s) often aborted. Glumes 5–8, spiral, acute, short-mucronate, red-brown, glabrous, 3–4 mm long. Bristles 5 or 6, from slightly shorter to longer than nut. Stamens (1,) 2 (or 3). Style 2-fid; style base conical, glabrous, half as long to as long as and almost as broad as nut.

Nut obovoid to broad-obovoid, dorsiventrally compressed, 1.5–2 mm long, 1–1.7 mm wide, finely transversely wrinkled (cells longitudinally oblong), pale to dark red-brown.

Photo J. and P. Edwards

Photo J. and P. Edwards

Photo J. and P. Edwards

Flowering: spring.

Distribution and occurrence: Coast south to Royal N.P., extending inland to Boonoo Boonoo Falls and Wollomombi.

Grows in wet areas beside streams, in swamps, and along drainage lines in sclerophyll forest on sandy soils.
NSW subdivisions: NC, CC, NT
Other Australian states: Qld Vic. N.T.
AVH map***

Sometimes treated as a subspecies of the tropical species R. rugosa.

Text by K. L. Wilson (1993; edited 12 June 2012)
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.
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