General: Perennial herb from long, creeping rhizomes; stems arising singly, not in dense clusters, round, usually straight, smooth, wiry, erect, 15-60 cm tall.
Leaves: Reduced to small sheaths at the base of the stem; sheaths shiny brown.
Flowers: Inflorescence dense, with 3 to 12 dark-coloured flowers; branches 1-7 cm long, appearing as if on the side of the stem, located above the middle, in the upper third of the stem; perianth segments dark with translucent margins, red-brown, 4-5 mm long, the outer slightly longer than the inner ones, pointed, the inner segments blunt; stamens 6; anthers shorter than the filaments; involucral bract 2-20 cm long, cylindrical, resembling a continuation of the stem.
Fruits: Capsules, with blunt tips, about equal to the perianth segments; seeds spindle-shaped, 0.8-1.1 mm long, lacking tail-like appendages.
Notes: The taxonomic relationship between this species and related J. balticus has not been clarified. Juncus arcticus is a variable species, with many infraspecific taxa described. The whole complex requires further study and more intensive collecting throughout our area. I am treating all of our plants as ssp. sitchensis with the exception of some plants from northern BC which belong to the rare ssp. alaskanus.
Tidal flats and lakeshores in the lowland and montane zones; ssp. alaskanus - rare in N and E BC; ssp. sitchensis - common in coastal BC; ssp. alaskanus - N to AK, YT and NT; ssp. sitchensis - amphiberingian, N to AK, E Asia.
Recommended citation: Author, Date. Page title. In Klinkenberg, Brian. (Editor) 2020. E-Flora BC:
Electronic Atlas of the Plants of British Columbia [eflora.bc.ca]. Lab for
Advanced Spatial Analysis, Department of Geography, University of British
Columbia, Vancouver. [Accessed:
2021-09-16 3:18:15 PM
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