West Highland Flora

Great Fen Sedge


Cladium mariscus

 

Cladium mariscus

Photo Carl Farmer
21 Jun 2004 Brochel, Raasay
Height of picture c 12.5 cm

Occasional, beside lochs on rich, non-acid ground.

Plant to 2.5 m tall.  Leaves 10-18 mm wide.  Fruits c 3 mm long, in spikelets c 2-4 mm long, which are in clusters 5-10 mm wide.  1-4 flowers/fruits per spikelet, 3-10 spikelets per cluster.

ID: Leaves saw-toothed on the margins and on the midrib below.  Inflorescence a panicle of spikelet-clusters.  Picture on left shows inflorescence just beginning to open: when fully open the dark brown clusters are on the ends of panicle-branches.  The clusters are roughy globular in shape and not like the spikes of Carex species.

Other features: A very tall sedge forming large stands visible from a distance (see bottom picture).  Glumes pale brown, the lower 2-3 in each spikelet small and empty.  Fruit dark brown.  Like most non-Carex sedges, the flowers are hermaphrodite and all of one kind, whereas in Carex (and Kobresia) they are male or female and visibly different.

 

Cladium mariscus

Photo Carl Farmer
21 Jun 2004 Brochel, Raasay

 

Cladium mariscus

Photo Carl Farmer
21 Jun 2004 Brochel, Raasay


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