Carex polyantha

River Sedge

Densely tufted sedge spreading from long underground stems. Flowering stems erect, rough above, 3-angled to 80cm high, leafy bract longer than flowerhead.

Additional information

  • FamilyCyperaceae
  • StoreyLower storey
  • Size0.2-0.8 m high
  • Plant groupingGrasses, Rushes & Sedges
  • LeavesLeaves 4-9 mm wide, similar length to flowering stems. Sheath orange-brown, appendage pointed to blunt, notched.
  • Flower colourDark red-brown
  • Flowering timeSpring to Summer
  • FlowersErect flowerhead 10-55 cm long with 5-8 scattered stalkless spikes 2-17 cm long, 1 per node; upper 1-5 spikes male, or female below; lower spikes female or with male above. Fruit red-dotted, style 2-branched.
  • Bird attractingNo
  • Butterfly attractingNo
  • Frog habitatYes
  • Growing conditionsMoist sandy to rocky soils on stream margins of foothills. Full sun, semi shade.
  • Garden usePlant beside water areas or in bog gardens.
  • Commercially availableNo information available
  • Conservation statusSignificant within the Shire. Known from few local sites. Scattered sites mostly in Gippsland.
  • Related speciesSimilar to Carex gaudichaudiana (see Aquatics). Fruit of C. polyantha tapers abruptly and has a distinctive parallel-sided tip, while the fruit of C. gaudichaudii tapers gradually and has a notched tip.
Photographer/s: Marilyn Bull ©

Plant Communities

  • 12 Manna Gum Riparian Forest - Dandenongs (EVC 18)
  • 13 Manna Gum Riparian Forest - Upper Yarra (EVC 18)
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