Carex leptalea Wahlenb.

Locations ofCarex leptalea Wahlenb. in Virginia

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Botanical Name
Carex leptalea Wahlenb.
Common Name
Bristly-stalk Sedge
Flora of Virginia Name/Status
Carex leptalea Wahlenb. var. harperi (Fern.) Weath. & Grisc. + C. leptalea Wahlenb. var. leptalea
Two varieties have been recognized in our area by taxonomists, but not in local floristic studies. Most of our material is the widespread var. leptalea. The distribution of var. harperi (Fern.) Weath. & Grisc., a more southern and coastal taxon, is likely concentrated in the se. Virginia Coastal Plain. It differs from var. leptalea in its larger perigynia, larger spikes, and more aristate pistillate scales. Varietal maps are not available at this time, pending the study of herbarium material that will be needed to produce them.
The species occurs in both extremely acidic and strongly calcareous soils, and from very low to high elevations, in bogs, fens, seeps, seepage swamps and, less characteristically, on hummocks of alluvial swamps. It is locally frequent throughout the state; the distribution of var. leptalea is likely concentrated in the mountains, inner and n. Piedmont, and n. Coastal Plain, while the distribution of var. harperi is likely concentrated in the s. Coastal Plain and adjacent Piedmont; additional field and herbarium study is needed.
Native Status

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