photo of Carex pensylvanica

Carex pensylvanica

Pennsylvania Sedge

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Pennsylvania Sedge is a low-growing, semi-evergreen perennial sedge, which loves shade. The bright-green, arching, grass-like leaves grow in soft...

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Description:

Pennsylvania Sedge is a low-growing, semi-evergreen perennial sedge, which loves shade. The bright-green, arching, grass-like leaves grow in soft clumps. This plant spreads by rhizomes (underground stems) to form a nice groundcover. It is monoecious (separate male and female flowers on the same plant); the small green male and purple-brown female flowers bloom on top of erect flowering stems in May. The female flowers are followed by tiny, brown seed capsules. The seeds are a source of food for birds and small mammals, and the leaves provide cover for wildlife. This plant prefers dry, shady areas, and grows well under oak trees. Plant Pennsylvania Sedge under perennials in shade gardens, or use it as a groundcover or a no-mow lawn substitute in dry, shady areas. If used as turf, it can be mowed, but only needs it two to three times a year!

Plant Details:

Plant Type: Grass, Groundcover

New Jersey Native: Yes

Deer Resistance: High

Attracts Pollinators and Wildlife: Birds

Salt Tolerance: Low to None

Hardiness Zone: 6a, 6b, 7a, 7b

Physiographic Region: All Regions in NJ

Grows in Special Ecoregions: Pinelands

Soil Characteristics

Soil Type: Loam, Organic, Sandy

Soil Moisture: Well-drained

Soil pH: Slightly Acidic, Neutral, Slightly Alkaline

Light Needs of Plant

Optimal Light: Partial Shade

Light Range: Partial Shade, Shade

Water Needs of Plant

Soil Moisture: Well-drained

Drought Tolerance: Medium

Size and Growth Rate

Height: 0.5 - 1 ft

Spread: 0.5 - 1 ft

Growth Rate: Medium