Vascular Plants of North Carolina
Account for Coastal Plain Beaksedge - Rhynchospora stenophylla   Chapman
Members of Cyperaceae:
Members of Rhynchospora with account distribution info or public map:
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Section 5 » Order Cyperales » Family Cyperaceae
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DistributionMostly the Sandhills; locally in the Coastal Plain east to Carteret County, Though there is a 2001 record for southeastern VA (the only state record), it is genuinely very rare to absent in the NC central and northern counties.

Coastal Plain, southeastern VA to northern FL and Southern MS.
AbundanceUncommon to locally frequent in the Sandhills (occurs mostly on Fort Bragg). Rare to farther eastward. Plants tend to form tussocks or patches of many leaves and culms. This is a Watch List species.
HabitatSeepage slopes, pitcher-plant bogs, blackwater streamhead ecotones.
See also Habitat Account for Coastal Plain Herbaceous Peatlands
PhenologyFlowering and fruiting July-September.
IdentificationPlants tend to form tussocks or patches of extraordinarily skinny and long leaves and culms (2-3 feet tall or long), all of which are lazy or lying prostrate. It closely resembles R. rariflora, but differs in having bristles longer than the seed beak, versus no longer than the seed body in that species.
Taxonomic CommentsNone

Members of the genus Rhynchospora -- mainly called beaksedges but also called beakrushes -- are mostly Coastal Plain in distribution and are important members of our longleaf pine savannas, flatwoods, streamheads, depression ponds, Carolina bays, and beaver ponds. They vary from small and wiry to large and coarse. Keys concentrate on features of the achenes (seeds) and the shape and arrangement of the flower clusters (spikelets). The seeds may or not have bristles at their base; bristle number, length, and toothing are critical characters. Size and shape of the seed beaks is also critical. The drawings in Godfrey & Wooten (1979) are extremely helpful. The genus now includes Dichromena, the white-topped sedges.
Other Common Name(s)Coastal Bog Beaksedge, Chapman's Beaksedge
State RankS3 [S2S3]
Global RankG4
State StatusW1
US Status
USACE-agcpOBL link
USACE-empFACW link
County Map - click on a county to view source of record.
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B.A. SorrieRichmond County, 1999. HokePhoto_natural
B.A. SorrieHoke County, 1993, Fort Bragg. HokePhoto_natural

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