Vascular Plants of North Carolina
Account for Sawgrass - Cladium jamaicense   Crantz
Members of Cyperaceae:
Members of Cladium with account distribution info or public map:
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Section 5 » Family Cyperaceae
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DistributionTidewater region of the Outer Coastal Plain, including the Outer Banks.

Coastal Plain, VA to southern FL, west to eastern TX and central AR; West Indies.
AbundanceFrequent to common. Populations often are dominant or co-dominant in the community and can extend for a several dozen acres in a few locales, such as near Manns Harbor (Dare County). This is clearly an S4 species, not S3 as given by the NCNHP.
HabitatBrackish and fresh-tidal river marshes, upper edges of salt marshes, interdune swales and marshes.
PhenologyFlowering and fruiting July-October.
IdentificationThis is the famous Sawgrass of the Florida Everglades. Leaves are sharply scabrous along the margins and the midvein, and reach up to 5 feet tall. Flowering stems (culms) project well above the leaves and may reach 8 or 9 feet, with a branching inflorescence 1-2 feet long. You do not want to walk through a stand of Sawgrass, as you can easily cut your skin on the leaves.
Taxonomic CommentsBy some taxonomists include it within the near-global C. mariscus as ssp. jamaicense.

Other Common Name(s)Jamaica Swamp Sawgrass
State RankS3 [S4]
Global RankG5
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B.A. SorrieAndros Island, Bahamas, 1993. Photo_non_NCPhoto_non_NC
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