Vascular Plants of North Carolina
Account for Dark-green Bulrush - Scirpus atrovirens   Willdenow
Members of Cyperaceae:
Members of Scirpus with account distribution info or public map:
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Section 5 » Order Cyperales » Family Cyperaceae
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DistributionA careful check of all specimens at NCU and NCSC revealed that none can be referred to this species. They actually are Scirpus georgianus or S. hattorianus, neither of which were recognized by name in NC at the time of RAB (1968). Bona-fide records of S. atrovirens are known from VA and GA, so examination of specimens in other herbaria may be needed to prove its existence in NC. It is possible that this species ranges south only to eastern VA, and south in the mountains of VA southwestward to northwestern GA -- missing NC slightly just to our northwest.

Southern Canada south to VA, GA, and TX.
AbundanceWeakley's (2018) range map shows it as common in the NC mountains and Piedmont, and rare in the Coastal Plain. The NCNHP's State Rank of S4 is based on the range map in RAB (1968), which mirrors that. The specimen review by one of the editors (Sorrie) suggests that the species might be truly absent, and if so, the suggested State Rank would be SR (reported). However, a more conservative approach is to simply go with SU (undetermined) for now.
HabitatWet meadows, marshes, bogs, and other mostly open wetlands.
PhenologyFlowers and fruits from late June - September.
Taxonomic CommentsNote that the genus Schoenoplectus has been split from Scirpus and includes plants with sessile spikelets, or with spikelets with a few branches (vs. open, widely branching inflorescences). Most of our Schoenoplectus species appear to have no leaves (exceptions are S. etuberculatus and S. subterminalis), whereas Scirpus taxa have well-developed basal and stem leaves.
Other Common Name(s)
State RankS4 [SU]
Global RankG5?
State Status
US Status
USACE-agcpOBL link
USACE-empOBL link
County Map - click on a county to view source of record.
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B.A. SorrieQuincy Bog, NH, Aug 2014. Photo_non_NCPhoto_non_NC
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