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Schoenoplectus subterminalis (Torrey) Soják. Swaying Rush, Water Bulrush. Phen: May-Jun; Jun-Aug. Hab: Beaver ponds, bogs, blackwater creeks, peat mats, in highly acid water. Dist: NL (Newfoundland) west to s. AK, south to se. NC, nc. SC, MO, UT (?), and n. CA (the distribution discontinuous, especially southward); disjunct southwards in s. AL and Panhandle FL.

ID notes: A good first clue to Schoenoplectus subterminalis is a mass of green, floating "spaghetti"; that is, seeing very long, threadlike leaves that float and sway with the flow of the creek or river. Flowering stems are rather erect and rise above the surface by a foot or more, each with one small, stalkless, spikelet near the tip. The small size of the spikelet makes it look like some debris stuck onto the stem, and therefore easily passed over. It may also be confused with Eleocharis robbinsii, which often co-occurs, but the latter has a terminal spikelet.

Origin/Endemic status: Native

Taxonomy Comments: The hybrid S. etuberculatus × subterminalis has been collected in Hoke Co, NC and Lexington County, SC; it has sterile, malformed achenes.

Synonymy: = FNA23, Il, K1, K3, K4, Mi, Mo1, NE, NY, Pa, Strong (1994); = Scirpus subterminalis Torr. – C, F, G, GW1, RAB, S, Tat, W

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Wetland Indicator Status:

  • Atlantic and Gulf Coastal Plain: OBL
  • Eastern Mountains and Piedmont: OBL
  • Great Plains: OBL
  • Midwest: OBL
  • Northcentral & Northeast: OBL

Heliophily ?: 9

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image of plant© Bruce A. Sorrie | Original Image ⭷
image of plant© Gary P. Fleming | Original Image ⭷
image of plant© Bruce A. Sorrie | Original Image ⭷
image of plant© Bruce A. Sorrie | Original Image ⭷


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