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Cladium jamaicense Crantz. Sawgrass. Phen: Jul-Oct. Hab: In circumneutral to alkaline situations, including brackish marshes and oligohaline freshwater marshes, widespread inland in FL over limestone or oolite (notably in the Everglades of s. FL), and also inland in pine savannas underlain by coquina limestone (NC) or in salt glades (s. AR) or calcareous fens (MO). Dist: Se. VA south to s. FL, west to sc. AR and e. TX; West Indies. This is, of course, the famous sawgrass which dominates many square miles in the Everglades of s. FL (where underlain by oolite).

ID notes: Cladium jamaicense is easy to recognize from its grayish-green, leathery leaves, harshly scabrous on their margins and the midvein beneath; the leaves are usually strongly V'ed, making for 3 cutting edges arrayed in close to an equilateral triangle in ×-section.

Origin/Endemic status: Native

Taxonomy Comments: C. jamaicense is sometimes treated as one component (C. mariscus ssp. jamaicense) of a multi-continental C. mariscus complex. Unresolved taxonomic issues also relate to the circumscription of C. jamaicense and C. californicum (S. Watson) O'Neill, particularly as regards inland populations in the sw. United States and n. Mexico, extending east to the Edwards Plateau (and vicinity) in TX.

Other Comments: The leaves are harshly scabrous and can cut skin or fabric.

Synonymy: = Ar, Bah, C, ETx1, F, FNA23, G, GW1, RAB, Tx, Va, WH3; = Cladium effusum Torr. – S13; = Mariscus jamaicensis (Crantz) Britton – S; < Cladium mariscus (L.) Pohl ssp. jamaicense (Crantz) Kük. – K1, K3, K4, NcTx

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Wetland Indicator Status:

  • Atlantic and Gulf Coastal Plain: OBL (name change)
  • Great Plains: OBL (name change)

Heliophily ?: 9

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image of plant© Scott Ward | Original Image ⭷
image of plant© Scott Ward | Original Image ⭷
image of plant© Scott Ward | Original Image ⭷
image of plant© Keith Bradley | Original Image ⭷
image of plant© Gary P. Fleming | Original Image ⭷
image of plant© Gary P. Fleming | Original Image ⭷
image of plant© Scott Ward | Original Image ⭷
image of plant© Keith Bradley | Original Image ⭷
image of plant© Scott Ward | Original Image ⭷
image of plant© Keith Bradley | Original Image ⭷
image of plant© Gary P. Fleming | Original Image ⭷

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