Carex is the classical Latin name for sedge, perhaps from 'carere' meaning to be absent, as the upper spikes are staminate (male) and do not produce seeds. May have been used by Virgil for plants in this genus and derives from ancient Greek 'keiro' meaning to cut, referring to the sharp edge of leaf margins.
Distribution and status
Very few collections from South Australia, from the southern Mount Lofty Ranges and the lower South-east, growing on fertile soil in depressions and fringing watercourses. Also found in New South Wales, Victoria and Tasmania. Native. Rare in South Australia. Uncommon in New South Wales. Common in the other States.
Herbarium regions: Southern Lofty, South Eastern
NRM regions: Adelaide and Mount Lofty Ranges, South East
AVH map: SA distribution map (external link)
Coarse tufted perennial sedge with short ascending tough woody rhizomes forming large clumps, base of culms covered with the fibrous remains of old leaf sheaths. Flower-spikes 1 to several at the nodes of the culm; mature female spikes usually 5-8 mm diameter, the lowermost drooping on long slender peduncles longer than the spikes; upper 1-4 spikes predominantly male. Flowers in spring and summer. Fruits are pale brown, clusters of drooping heads, each containing numerous individual fruit. Seeds are brown three-sided seed to 3 mm long and 1.5 mm wide, covered by a striated papery layer with a pointed forked tip. Seed embryo type is capitate.
Seed collection and propagation
Collect seeds between December and April. Collect fruits either by running your hands along the heads; mature seeds will come-off easily, or cut whole heads that are brown, containing dark hard seeds. Place the heads in a tray and leave to dry for one to two weeks. Then rub the heads with a rubber bung to dislodge the seeds. Use a sieve to separate any unwanted material. Store the seeds with a desiccant such as dried silica beads or dry rice, in an air tight container in a cool and dry place. From one collections, the seed viability was high, at 100%.
|Location||No. of seeds|
|BGA||10,000 (17.68 g)||3||6-Jan-2008||RJB76802|