Vascular Plants of North Carolina
Account for Annual Wild-rice - Zizania aquatica   L.
Members of Zizania with account distribution info or public map:
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Section 5 » Order Cyperales » Family Poaceae
AuthorL.
DistributionOuter Coastal Plain, very local on the Outer Banks.

ME to ND, south to northern FL and southern LA.
AbundanceUncommon and local, but where found can be fairly common to abundant. This is a Watch List species.
HabitatFresh-tidal marshes, brackish marshes along blackwater streams and at the periphery of sounds, interdune marshes and ponds.
See also Habitat Account for Coastal Freshwater and Low-Salinity Marshes
PhenologyFlowering and fruiting June-October.
IdentificationAnnual Wild-rice is very distinct. Plants usually emerge from shallow water, the stems typically reaching 6-9 feet tall -- our tallest annual grass. Leaves are 2-3 feet long and up to 2 inches wide. The inflorescence is fairly open and 1-2 feet long, the lower branches arching while the upper branches are strongly ascending. It is a good food for waterfowl, and it is the only known foodplant for caterpillars of the Rare Skipper (Problema bulenta) in NC.
Taxonomic CommentsA restricted variety occurs in the St. Lawrence River estuary.

Other Common Name(s)Wild Rice, Indian Rice. As Zizaniopsis miliacea is generally named as Southern Wild-rice, it is best to use a modifier name for Zizania -- Annual Wild-rice and not just Wild Rice.
State RankS2
Global RankG5
State StatusW7 [W1]
US Status
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