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Brown Beak-sedge

Rhynchospora fusca

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Plant Profile

Flowering Months:
Cyperaceae (Sedge)
Also in this family:
American Galingale, Birdsfoot Sedge, Black Alpine Sedge, Black Bog-rush, Bladder Sedge, Bog Sedge, Bottle Sedge, Bristle Club-rush, Bristle Sedge, Broad-leaved Cotton-grass, Brown Bog-rush, Chestnut Rush, Close-headed Alpine Sedge, Club Sedge, Common Club-rush, Common Cotton-grass, Common Sedge, Common Spike-rush, Curved Sedge, Deergrass, Dioecious Sedge, Distant Sedge, Divided Sedge, Dotted Sedge, Downy-fruited Sedge, Dwarf Sedge, Dwarf Spike-rush, Estuarine Sedge, False Fox Sedge, False Sedge, Few-flowered Sedge, Few-flowered Spike-rush, Fibrous Tussock Sedge, Fingered Sedge, Flat Sedge, Flea Sedge, Floating Club-rush, Gingerbread Sedge, Glaucous Sedge, Great Fen Sedge, Greater Pond Sedge, Greater Tussock Sedge, Green-ribbed Sedge, Grey Club-rush, Grey Sedge, Hair Sedge, Hairy Sedge, Haresfoot Sedge, Hare's-tail Cotton-grass, Heath Sedge, Hop Sedge, Large Yellow Sedge, Lesser Pond Sedge, Lesser Tussock Sedge, Long-bracted Sedge, Many-stalked Spike-rush, Mountain Bog Sedge, Needle Spike-rush, Northern Deergrass, Northern Spike-rush, Oval Sedge, Pale Sedge, Pendulous Sedge, Perennial Sedge, Pill Sedge, Prickly Sedge, Remote Sedge, Rock Sedge, Round-headed Club-rush, Russet Sedge, Salt Sedge, Sand Sedge, Scorched Alpine Sedge, Sea Club-rush, Sheathed Sedge, Slender Club-rush, Slender Cotton-grass, Slender Sedge, Slender Spike-rush, Slender Tufted Sedge, Smooth-stalked Sedge, Soft-leaved Sedge, Spiked Sedge, Spring Sedge, Star Sedge, Starved Wood Sedge, Stiff Sedge, String Sedge, Sweet Galingale, Tall Bog Sedge, Tawny Sedge, Thin-spiked Wood Sedge, Triangular Club-rush, True Fox Sedge, Tufted Sedge, Water Sedge, White Beak-sedge, White Sedge, Wood Club-rush, Wood Sedge, Yellow Sedge
Life Cycle:
Maximum Size:
40 centimetres tall
Bogs, heathland.

Brown, no petals
Reddish-brown spikelets. The upper leaf-like bracts extend beyond the head of the flowers.
An beaked achene (nutlet). Single-seeded.
Narrow, thread-like leaves. Perennial, growing on peaty soils.
Other Names:
Beak Rush, Beak Sedge, Brown Beakrush, Dark-fringed Beak-sedge.
Frequency (UK):

Similar Species

Other Information


Rhynchospora fusca, also known as brown beak-sedge or dark-fringed beak-sedge, is a species of flowering plant that is native to North America. It is a member of the sedge family and is known for its small, brown or purple flowers and long, narrow leaves. Rhynchospora fusca is a perennial plant that grows up to 60 centimeters (24 inches) tall and has a thin, upright stem. The leaves are linear in shape and are a bright green color, with a distinctive, beak-like tip at the end. The plant produces small, brown or purple flowers that are arranged in clusters and are surrounded by long, brown or purple bracts. Rhynchospora fusca is found in a variety of habitats, including wetlands, marshes, and along streams and rivers. It is a popular garden plant and is known for its ability to tolerate wet soil conditions.


Brown-beak Sedge (Rhynchospora fusca) is a species of flowering plant that belongs to the Cyperaceae family. It is commonly found in wet areas such as marshes, swamps, and bogs across North America and some parts of Europe.

The plant has a distinctive appearance with a brownish-red colored beak that resembles a cone. The leaves are long and narrow, growing from the base of the stem and forming a tuft-like shape. The stems of the Brown-beak Sedge can grow up to 1 meter tall and are usually covered with small brown spikes.

This species is an important part of wetland ecosystems, providing habitat and food for a variety of wildlife species. It is also a popular ornamental plant and is used in landscaping and gardening to add texture and color to wet areas.

The Brown-beak Sedge is a hardy and resilient plant that can thrive in a variety of soils and conditions. It is also relatively easy to care for and does not require much maintenance. However, it is important to keep the soil consistently moist and to not let it dry out completely.

In terms of propagation, the Brown-beak Sedge can be propagated by dividing its roots or by using seed. Division is usually done in the spring, when the plant is just starting to grow. Simply dig up the clumps and separate the roots, then replant the pieces in the desired location. To propagate from seed, simply scatter the seed in the desired location and keep the soil consistently moist.

It is also worth mentioning that the Brown-beak Sedge can be used to help control erosion in wetland areas. Its strong roots help to hold the soil in place, preventing it from washing away.

However, it is important to be mindful of the potential for invasive growth, as the Brown-beak Sedge can quickly spread in wetland areas and displace native plant species. Care should be taken to monitor its growth and prevent it from spreading into natural areas.

One of the most notable features of the Brown-beak Sedge is its ability to tolerate and even thrive in a wide range of environmental conditions, including high humidity and heavy rainfall. This makes it a popular choice for gardeners who live in areas that experience frequent rainfall or have high humidity levels.

Another advantage of the Brown-beak Sedge is its attractive appearance, which can add a unique and visually appealing aspect to any wetland or garden. Its brownish-red beak and tuft-like leaves are eye-catching and can complement other plants in the area.

In addition to its ornamental qualities, the Brown-beak Sedge is also a valuable food source for wildlife. Its seeds and leaves provide a source of nutrition for a variety of animals, including waterfowl, small mammals, and insects.

It is important to note that the Brown-beak Sedge is not a suitable choice for all gardeners, as it does require specific growing conditions and is best suited to wetland or marsh-like environments. Gardeners who live in dryer climates may need to provide additional watering or create a marsh-like environment in order to grow this species successfully.

In conclusion, the Brown-beak Sedge is a versatile and attractive plant that can provide a range of benefits to wetland ecosystems and gardens. Whether you are a gardener, landscaper, or nature enthusiast, consider adding this species to your collection and help to support and protect wetland ecosystems.

Distribution Map

Reproduced by kind permission of the BSBI.

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