Perennial, loosely tufted herb from creeping rhizomes, the roots yellow-woolly; stems 10-60 cm tall, arising singly or a few together, equalling the leaves, reddish-tinged at the bases.
Sheaths loose; blades 3 to 5 per stem, flat with slightly rolled-under margins, borne on the lower 1/2 of the stem, 2-4 mm wide, finely and densely white-pimpled below, the lower ones much reduced.
Spikes 2 to 4, the terminal one linear, 12-22 mm long, long-stalked, with male flowers, the lower spikes 1 to 3, with female flowers, cylindrical, 1-2 cm long, 6-8 mm wide, separate, long-stalked, nodding; bracts subtending the spikes greenish, membranaceous and whitish at the bases, the tips bristlelike, sheathless, shorter than the spikes, the upper ones reduced.
Perigynia egg-shaped to narrowly egg-shaped, 3-4.4 mm long, 1.9-2.5 mm wide, pale to blackish-brown, 10- to 15-nerved, densely pimpled, short-stalked, beakless; female scales broadly egg-shaped, usually awn-tipped, narrower and longer than the perigynia, black to dark brown, the centres lighter, tending to wrap around the perigynia below; stigmas 3; achenes 3-angled, short-stalked, smooth, 1.7-2.5 mm long.
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.
Illustration Source: The Illustrated Flora of British Columbia
||Value / Class
Moisture Regime (SMR)
[0 - very xeric; 4 - mesic;
8 - hydric]
of field plots
species was recorded in:
BEC Zone Class
All BEC Zones (# of stations/zone) species was recorded in
|BWBS(2), CWH(109), ESSF(3), MH(10), SBS(6)|
Source: Klinkenberg 2013
Synonyms and Alternate Names:
Carex rariflora subsp. pluriflora
Carex rariflora var. pluriflora (Hultén) B. Boivin
Carex stygia T. Holm p.p., non Fr.