Pointed Broom Sedge - Carex scoparia
State Rank Reason (see State Rank above)
Rare in Montana, where it is currently known from only a few sites in the Clark Fork and Bitterroot River drainages.
Pointed Broom Sedge forms dense clumps without rhizomes and has stems 4-10 dm high. The lowermost leaves are reduced to scales. The leaf blades, which are 1-3 mm wide, are flat and clustered just above the scales on the lower stem. Flowers are clustered in 3-8 egg-shaped, stalkless spikes, which are 8-14 mm long and in close proximity to each other at the top of the stem. Male flowers (recognized by the old stamens) occur at the base of each spike. The pale green to light brown egg-shaped perigynia are 4-6 mm long and taper gradually to a poorly-defined beak. The firm scales are light brown with a green center and are smaller than the perigynia that they subtend. There are 2 styles and the achenes are lens-shaped.
Fruiting in August.
There are many sedges similar to C. scoparia. The common C. bebbii has perigynia that are less than 4 mm long. A technical manual and hand lens or microscope will be needed for positive identification.
BC to NL south to CA, ID, MT, KS, MS and GA (Lesica 2012. Manual of Montana Vascular Plants. BRIT Press. Fort Worth, TX).
Observations in Montana Natural Heritage Program Database
Number of Observations:
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(Observations spanning multiple months or years are excluded from time charts)
Wet soil along rivers and sloughs in the valleys.
- Additional ReferencesLegend: View Online Publication
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- Hermann, F. J. 1970. Manual of the Carices of the Rocky Mountains and Colorado Basin. Agricultural Handbook No. 374. USDA Forest Service. 397 pp.
- Lesica, P., M.T. Lavin, and P.F. Stickney. 2012. Manual of Montana Vascular Plants. Fort Worth, TX: BRIT Press. viii + 771 p.