Long-Scaled Nut Sedge
Long-scaled nut sedge is 0.75-3 feet tall and unbranched. The stem is 3-angled, glabrous, and rather stout. A few leaves develop along the lower half of the stem. Their blades are up to 1.5 inches long, 0.5 inch across, medium green, and glabrous, with a deep channel along the midrib. The lower leaves often wither away before flowering occurs. The inflorescence consists of an umbel or compound umbel of floral spikes several inches across, typically containing 1-2 sessile spikes and 3-5 spikes on stiff peduncles up to 4 inches long. Some of these spikes may have 1-2 shorter lateral spikes projecting from their bases. At the base of the inflorescence are 3-8 leafy bracts that are as long as the leaf blades and very similar to them. These bracts ascend slightly upward at the base and are widely spreading. Some are longer than the inflorescence. Each short-cylindrical floral spike is about 1-2 inches long, and has 20-50 linear-flattened spikelets that extend perpendicularly from its central axis in all directions. Each greenish yellow spikelet is about 0.5-0.75 inch long, 0.04-0.08 inch across, and contains 5-11 florets and their scales. Each floret has 3 stigmas and 3 anthers. The scales are 0.12 inch or more long.
DuPage County Notes
This is a common native perennial species of moist soil, including marsh edges, mudflats and agricultural areas.