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Plant Details

Eriophorum virginicum

Tawny Cottongrass, Tawny Cottonsedge

Scientific Name:

Eriophorum virginicum

Genus:

Eriophorum

Species Epithet:

virginicum

Common Name:

Tawny Cottongrass, Tawny Cottonsedge

Plant Type

Grass/Sedge/Rush

Life Cycle

Perennial

Plant Family

Cyperaceae (Sedge Family)

Native/Alien:

NC Native

Size:

1-3 ft.

Bloom Color(s):

Brown

Light:

Sun - 6 or more hours of sun per day, Part Shade - 2 to 6 hours of sun per day

Soil Moisture:

Wet

Bloom Time:

June, July, August, September

Growing Area:

Mountains, Piedmont, Coastal Plain

Habitat Description:

Peaty sites, limited in habitat throughout the region, occurring in the Mountains in bogs and fens, in the Piedmont (formerly) in bogs, in the fall-line sandhills in burned-out pocosins, in the Coastal Plain in pocosins, acidic seeps, and peat-burn pools. Rare throughout NC.

Leaf Arrangement:

Alternate, Basal

Leaf Type:

Leaves veined, not needle-like or scale-like

Leaf Form:

Simple

Life Cycle:

Perennial

Wildlife Value:

Has some wildlife value

Landscape Value:

Not Recommended for home landscapes

State Rank:

S3: Vulnerable (*Key)

Global Rank:

G5 - Secure (*Key)

State Status:

W1: Watch List: Rare but Relatively Secure (*Key)

In bloom

An uncommon sedge, Cottongrass is found in peaty sites, bogs, fens, seeps and wet ditches. Usually smaller in the mountains than the coastal plains.

image

Paynter, Watauga Co.

Closeup of seedhead

image

March, 2011

Links:

USDA PLANTS Database Record


Bird-Friendly Native Plants



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