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Rhynchospora microcarpa Baldwin ex A. Gray. Southern Beaksedge. Phen: Jul-Aug (-Jun). Hab: Swamp forests, maritime wet grasslands, wet pine savannas, marl prairies, strand swamps, cypress woodlands. Dist: E. NC south to s. FL and west to TX; West Indies (Cuba, Puerto Rico); Bahamas; Belize.

ID notes:Rhynchospora microcarpa usually grows 7-9 dm tall, with anywhere from 3-10 or more chestnut-colored spikelet clusters that are spaced into 2-3 groups. This species is easily confused with R. elliottii and R. perplexa. R. elliottii is distinguished by leaves 4-6 mm wide, bristles longer than the tubercle, flattish achene faces, and a tubercle that is longer than broad. R. microcarpa and R. perplexa have leaves 1-3 mm wide and tubercles as broad as long or broader. In R. microcarpa, the achene is biconvex and the bristles are half as long as the achene to equaling the tubercle. In R. perplexa, the achene faces are flattish and the bristles are absent or rudimentary (< ½ as long as the achene).

Origin/Endemic status: Native

Synonymy: = Ar, ETx1, F, GW1, K4, RAB, Tx, WH3, Bridges & Orzell (2023) in Weakley et al (2023), Gale (1944), McMillan (2007); < Rhynchospora microcarpa Baldwin ex A.Gray – Bah, FNA23, K1, K3; > Rynchospora edisoniana Britton in Small – S; < Rynchospora microcarpa – S13; >< Rynchospora microcarpa – S

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Wetland Indicator Status:

  • Atlantic and Gulf Coastal Plain: OBL (taxonomic split from wetland indicator species)
  • Eastern Mountains and Piedmont: FACW
  • Great Plains: FACW (taxonomic split from wetland indicator species)

Heliophily: 6

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image of plant© Scott Ward | Original Image ⭷
image of plant© Scott Ward | Original Image ⭷
image of plant© Bruce A. Sorrie | Original Image ⭷
image of plant© Scott Ward | Original Image ⭷
image of plant© Scott Ward | Original Image ⭷
image of plant© Godfrey and Wooten 1979 | Original Image ⭷
image of plant© Patrick McMillan | Original Image ⭷


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