Carex gaudichaudiana

Fen Sedge

Loosely tufted sedge spreading from long underground stems. Can form extensive mats. Flowering stems erect, rough, 3-angled to 90cm high, leafy bract longer than flowerhead.

Additional information

  • FamilyCyperaceae
  • StoreyLower storey
  • Size10-100 cm high
  • Plant groupingAquatic & Semi aquatic
  • LeavesLeaves bluish-green, 2-4 mm wide, margins rough, longer than flowering stems. Sheath pale yellow-brown, appendage pointed.
  • Flower colourAlmost black
  • Flowering timeSeptember to February
  • FlowersErect flowerhead 7-18 cm long; 3-8 stalkless spikes 1.5-6 cm long, 1 per node, scattered; upper 1-2 spikes male; lower spikes female or with male at either end. Fruit 4-6 veined, pale green to brown with red dots.
  • Bird attractingNo
  • Butterfly attractingFood plant for caterpillars
  • Frog habitatYes
  • Growing conditionsPermanently moist to wet soil or shallow water in swamps, slow-moving streams and fresh water to 30 cm deep. Full sun, semi shade.
  • Garden useUseful as a small sedge beside water areas and in shallow ponds and dams. Ornamental.
  • Commercially availableIndigenous nursery
  • Conservation statusLocally common within its preferred growing conditions
  • Related speciesSimilar to Carex polyantha. Fruit of C. gaudichaudii tapers gradually and has a notched tip while the fruit of C. polyantha tapers abruptly and has a distinctive parallel-sided tip.
Photographer/s: Marilyn Bull ©

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