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Carex grayi

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Plant types and subtypes: Grasses, Sedges, Wetland Grasses, Ornamental Grasses

Light Requirements: sun, part-sun, part-shade

Water Use: high

Soil Moisture: moist, wet

Soil Description: acid, rich, loam

Height: 2'-3'

Bloom Time: May, June, July, August

Bloom Color: green

Leaf Color: green

Hardiness Zone: 4, 5, 6, 7, 8

Additional Tags: attracts birds, bog plant, clumping, cut flowers, dried flowers, fall interest, mounding, naturalizing, ornamental foliage, pond margin plant, showy fruit, stream margin plant, swamp plant, wetland plant

Carex grayi (Gray's sedge)
  • Carex grayi (Gray's sedge)
  • Carex grayi (Gray's sedge)
  • Carex grayi (Gray's sedge)
  • Carex grayi (Gray's sedge)

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Description

Carex grayi

Also known as:

Gray's sedge

,

Scientific Synonyms:

Carex asa-grayi

Description

Carex grayi is a very ornamental grass typically found growing along wetland margins. It is clump forming and can reach a height of up to 3". The grassy leaves leaves arch downwards and create an open form. Their color will vary from light green in full sun, to darker greens with more shade. The most noteworthy characteristic of this sedge are its medieval mass-like seed heads. These appear in summer as pale-green terminal clusters, will turn brown as they ripen, and persist well into winter.

Cultivation

Gray's sedge is a thirsty plant, but easy to grow in the right environment. It likes rich, wet, loamy soils in full sun to part-shade. Its water requirements will be higher in full sun, but those conditions will also produce a showier specimen. It is tolerant of occasional and seasonal flooding. It is best suited for use around ponds, streams, or other water features. Flowering will vary from May to August. Zones 4-8

Propagation

Propagate from seed in fall, or by clump division in early spring.

Additional Notes

In the right place, Gray's sedge will be a very ornamental plant with year round visual interest. The seed-topped stems are ideal for use as cut flowers, or in dried flower arrangements. The seeds are a food source for many bird species.

Native Range & Classification

Recorded County Distribution: USDA data

Native Range:
AL, AR, CT, FL, GA, IA, IL, IN, KS, KY, MA, MD, MI, MN, MO, MS, NC, NJ, NY, OH, OK, PA, SC, TN, VA, VT, WI, WV

USDA Endangered Status:

  • Threatened: MA

Classification

Kingdom Plantae Plants
Subkingdom Tracheobionta Vascular plants
Superdivision Spermatophyta Seed plants
Division Magnoliophyta Flowering plants
Class Monocotyledons
Subclass Commelinidae
Order Cyperales
Family Cyperaceae Sedge family
Genus Carex sedge
Species Carex grayi Gray's sedge