Carex echinata subsp. phyllomanica Murray (W. Boott) Reznicek
coastal stellate sedge
Cyperaceae (Sedge family)

Introduction to Vascular Plants


© Jamie Fenneman     (Photo ID #4201)


E-Flora BC Static Map

Distribution of Carex echinata subsp. phyllomanica
Click here to view the full interactive map and legend

Species Information

Perennial, densely tufted herb from fibrous roots; stems 10-60 cm tall, about equalling the leaves, roughened above.
Sheaths tight, more or less red-dotted on the fronts; blades 2 to 4 per stem, flat or channelled, smooth, borne on the lower 1/2 of the stems, 0.7-3 mm wide, the lower ones reduced.
Spikes 2 to 7, the terminal one unstalked, 4-10 mm long, with both male and female flowers, the female flowers towards the tips, the lower spikes 1 to 4, ascending, remote, 5- to 15-flowered, with female flowers, short-stalked; bracts subtending the female spikes short to prolonged and hairlike, the latter up to 2 cm long, bladeless, the upper bracts reduced and scalelike.
Perigynia egg-shaped, 2.5-4 mm long, 1-1.4 mm wide, plano-convex, reflexed, appressed, or spreading, greenish-yellow to brownish, sharp-edged, with smooth margins, finely-nerved to nerveless, the beaks 1-1.5 mm long, inconspicuously bidentate; female scales egg-shaped and rounded or pointed to awned at the tips, shorter than the perigynia, yellowish-brown to chestnut brown, with greenish midribs, the margins and tips broad, bright white or narrow, opaque or dull whitish; stigmas 2; achenes lens-shaped, sharp-pointed, 1.4-2 mm long.
Two varieties are recognized for BC :

1. Female scales rounded, chestnut brown, the margins and tips broad, bright white.............. ssp. phyllomanica (W. Boott) Reznicek

1. Female scales pointed to awned, yellowish-brown, the margins and tips narrow, opaque or dull whitish............... ssp. echinata

SourceThe Illustrated Flora of British Columbia


If more than one illustration is available for a species (e.g., separate illustrations were provided for two subspecies) then links to the separate images will be provided below. Note that individual subspecies or varietal illustrations are not always available.


Ecological Framework for Carex echinata ssp. phyllomanica

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)
539 3 1800
Slope Gradient (%)
8 0 43

Aspect (degrees)
[0 - N; 90 - E; 180 - S; 270 - W]

262 20 350
Soil Moisture Regime (SMR)
[0 - very xeric; 4 - mesic;
8 - hydric]
6 1 8
Modal Nutrient Regime
# of field plots
 species was recorded in:
Modal BEC Zone Class

All BEC Zones (# of stations/zone) species was recorded in

CDF(2), CWH(47), ESSF(8), MH(3), MS(2), SBPS(1)

Habitat and Range

Bogs and wet sedge meadows, open forests or sandy lakeshores and streamsides in the lowland and montane zones; ssp. echinata - frequent in S coastal BC, rare E of the Coast-Cascade Mountains N to 54degreeN; ssp. phyllomanica - common in coastal BC; ssp. echinata - circumpolar, N to AK (Aleutian Islands), E to NF and S to MA, PA, SC, IN, IA, ND, CO, UT, NV and CA; Eurasia; ssp. phyllomanica - N to AK and S to CA.

SourceThe Illustrated Flora of British Columbia


Synonyms and Alternate Names:
Carex echinata var. phyllomanica (W. Boott) B. Boivin
Carex phyllomanica W. Boott