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Genus :

CAREX

Family :

CYPERACEAE

Description


Perennial, tufted herbs. Stem erect, mostly triquetrous, rarely subterete, often clothed at the base by persistent leaf sheaths or their fibrous remains. Leaves tristichous, usually narrowly linear, sheathing at base, with a ligule at the junction of blade and sheath. Inflorescence panicles, racemes or spikes, more rarely reduced to a single spikelet. Spikelets terete, sessile or peduncled, few-many flowered, wholly male or wholly female or bisexual. Bracts foliacious or glume-like. Flower unisexual. Male flower consisting of three free stamens. Female flowers consisting of a single pistil enclosed in a bottle shaped prophyll; stigmas 2 or 3. Utricles membranous, beakless to strongly beaked. Fruit a nut, trigonous or lenticular, enclosed within the utricle.

Key to the species

Serial Key Reference
1a. Utricles shiny, triquetrous, not inflated, conspicuously 2-4-nerved on each face 2
1b. Utricles dull, inflated, not triquetrous, strongly 3-5-ribbed on each face or strongly 5-10-nerved 3
2a. Utricles 2.7-3.0 mm long, brownish-green C. continua
2b. Utricles 3-5 mm long, olivaceous to reddish-castaneous C. filicina
3a. Utricles spongy 3-5-ribbed on each face, stramineous or brown, 2-4 by 1(-1.5) mm, abruptly beaked, the beak usually straight, with oblique mouth often becoming bifid, ¾-1.5 mm long C. cruciata
3b. Utricles strongly many-nerved (5-7 or c. 10 nerves on each face), 3½-5 by 1-2 1/3 mm 4
4a. Utricles distinctly inflated, obscurely trigonous, 9-10 nerves on each face; nutlets often rostrate C. indica
4b. Utricles rhomboid, trigonous, 5-7 nerves on each face; nuletst erostrate C. stramentitia