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Fraser's Sedge, Fraser's Cymophyllus - Cymophyllus fraserianus


Family: Cyperaceae Sedge family Genus Common Name: Cymophyllus Native Status: Native
Cymophyllus fraserianus - Fraser's Sedge, Fraser's Cymophyllus. Cymophyllus fraserianus (syn. Cymophyllus fraseri, Carex fraseri, and Carex fraseriana) is a monotypic species - there are no other species in the genus. It is endemic to the southern Appalachian mountains, and is Threatened, Endangered, or of Special Concern in 5 of the 9 states in which it is found (GA, KY, MD, PA, TN.) While it is easily found in parts of its range, overall it is a rare plant.

Found in:
GA, KY, MD, NC, PA, SC, TN, VA, WV

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Distribution of Cymophyllus fraserianus in the United States and Canada:
USDA Plants Distribution Map temporarily unavailable.
Blue=Native; Grey=Introduced

Map from USDA Plants Database:
USDA, NRCS. 2009. The PLANTS Database (http://plants.usda.gov, 20 Jan 2017). National Plant Data Center, Baton Rouge, LA 70874-4490 USA.

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Site: Nantahala Gorge, Swain County, NC Date: 2013-April-08Photographer: Gerald C. Williamson
Nikon D7000
Tamron SP 90MM f/2.8 AF Macro
Frasers Sedge has both female and male flowers in the inflorescence. The male flowers are at the top, with the female flowers in the lower portion of the inflorescence. However, the anthers and stigma are usually not active at the same time on the same plant, so the plant is not self-pollinating.
Cymophyllus fraserianus

Site: Nantahala Gorge, Swain County, NC Date: 2013-April-08Photographer: Gerald C Williamson
Nikon D7000
The culm (stem of a sedge or grass) may be 12 to 18 tall, topped by a spike inflorescence.
Click on the photo for a larger image
Cymophyllus fraserianus

Site: Nantahala Gorge, Swain County, NC Date: 2013-April-08Photographer: Gerald C Williamson
Nikon D7000
The long, wide straplike leaves are among the features that qualifies Cymophyllus fraserianus to be in its own genus. One unique feature is the lack of a central vein, but having 50 to 90 more or less equal veins. The leaves may be up to 2 feet long. Cymophyllus fraserianus is evergreen.
Click on the photo for a larger image
Cymophyllus fraserianus

Site: Nantahala Gorge, Swain County, NC Date: 2013-April-08Photographer: Gerald C Williamson
Nikon D7000
Based on these photos, the culm is sheathed.
Click on the photo for a larger image
Cymophyllus fraserianus

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All content except USDA Plants Database map Copyright Gerald C. Williamson 2017
Photographs Copyrighted by the named photographer