Plant Guide > Grasses > Shear Grass > Fringed Sedge

Fringed Sedge

Fringed SedgeCarex crinita

The most showy sedge of swamps and open woods is the great Fringed Sedge (Carex crinita) which grows shoulderhigh, with sharp, three-angled stems which spread from the clumps and rest against the alders and the low shrubby growth of the thickets.

Indeed, if there be truth in the old couplet concerning:

"The alder whose fat shadow
Each plant set near to him
long flourisheth;"

the Fringed Sedge, with its rankgrowth, would seem to have derived benefit from that "fat shadow."

The plant blooms in midsummer, and at that season the long, drooping spikes are very noticeable with their spreading, long-awned, brownish green scales.

The staminate spikes are sometimes fertile at the base or in the middle, while the pistillate spikes are frequently staminate at the tips.