E-Flora BC: Electronic Atlas of the Flora of British Columbia

Carex bicolor Bellardi ex All.
two-coloured sedge (twocolor sedge)
Cyperaceae (Sedge family)

Introduction to Vascular Plants

© Ryan Batten  Email the photographer   (Photo ID #53022)

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Distribution of Carex bicolor
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Species Information

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Perennial, loosely tufted herb from short rhizomes; stems 5-30 cm tall, longer than the leaves.
Sheaths tight; blades 3 to 6 per stem, flat, borne on the lower 1/3 of the stem, 1-2 mm wide, the lower ones reduced.
Spikes 3 to 5, 4-10 mm long, borne close together at the top of the stems, with female flowers, except the terminal spike with a few male flowers at the base, short-stalked; bracts subtending the female spikes with short sheaths, scalelike, the lowermost barely reaching the top of the inflorescence and with blackish earlike lobes at the top of the sheath.
Perigynia egg-shaped, 2-3 mm long, 0.7-1 mm wide, inflated, dull green to bluish-white, nerveless, with a powdery surface, beakless; female scales egg-shaped, pointed to rounded at the tips, shorter and narrower than the perigynia, purplish-black to reddish-brown, with greenish midribs and translucent margins; stigmas 2; achenes lens-shaped, 1.2-1.4 mm long.

Source: The Illustrated Flora of British Columbia

Habitat / Range

Moist to wet meadows and shorelines in the montane to alpine zones; rare in N and C BC; circumpolar, N to AK, YT and NT and E to NF; Greenland, Iceland, Eurasia.

Source: The Illustrated Flora of British Columbia


Ecological Framework for Carex bicolor

The table below shows the species-specific information calculated from
original data (BEC database) provided by the BC Ministry of Forests and Range.
(Updated August, 2013)

Site Information
Value / Class




Elevation (metres) 33 359 685
Slope Gradient (%) 3 9 28
Aspect (degrees)
[0 - N; 90 - E; 180 - S; 270 - W]
20 77 350
Soil Moisture Regime (SMR)
[0 - very xeric; 4 - mesic;
8 - hydric]
2 4 7
Modal Nutrient Regime
Number of field plots
 species was recorded in:
Modal BEC Zone Class
All BEC Zones (# of stations/zone) species was recorded in: BAFA(2), ESSF(1), SBS(1)


The climate type for this species, as reported in the: "British Columbia plant species codes and selected attributes. Version 6 Database" (Meidinger et al. 2008), is not evaluated, unknown or variable.

Taxonomic and Nomenclatural Links

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General References