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Slender Club-rush

Isolepis cernua

Please keep in mind that it is illegal to uproot a plant without the landowner's consent and care should be taken at all times not to damage wild plants. Wild plants should never be picked for pleasure and some plants are protected by law.
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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 Beak-sedge, 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 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:
Annual or Perennial
Maximum Size:
30 centimetres tall
Cliffs, grassland, mud, rocky places, seaside, water, waterside, wetland.

White, no petals
Solitary, oval flowerheads. Silvery-white and petalless.
The fruit is a reddish-brown nut.
An annual or short-lived perennial with very narrow, thread-like leaves.
Other Names:
Dougal Grass, Drooping Grass, Fiber Optic Grass, Fiber Optic Plant, Low Bulrush, Nodding Clubrush, Tufted Clubrush.
Frequency (UK):
Occasionally seen  

Similar Species

Other Information


Isolepis cernua, also known as nodding clubrush or tufted clubrush, is a species of plant in the family Cyperaceae. It is native to wetlands and marshes in Europe, Asia, and North America. Nodding clubrush is a small, herbaceous plant that grows in a tufted or clumped habit. It has thin, wiry stems and small, grass-like leaves. It produces small, brown or greenish-brown flowers that are surrounded by papery bracts. The flowers have a nodding or drooping habit, which gives the plant its common name. It is commonly found in wetland habitats and is used in horticulture as an ornamental plant.


Slender Club-rush (Isolepis cernua) is a species of aquatic plant that is commonly found in wetlands and shallow waters. This plant is characterized by its delicate stems, slender leaves, and small, spherical spikes of flowers.

Slender Club-rush is an important plant for many reasons. For one, it provides crucial habitat for many species of wildlife, including waterfowl, fish, and amphibians. The plant also helps to improve water quality by filtering out pollutants and excess nutrients.

In addition, Slender Club-rush is used in landscaping and horticulture. It makes an excellent addition to water gardens and pond margins, where its delicate appearance adds a graceful touch to the water's edge. The plant is also highly valued as an ornamental plant, as its delicate spikes of flowers provide a striking contrast to the lush foliage.

Slender Club-rush is a hardy plant that is well-suited to growing in a variety of conditions. It can tolerate a wide range of water depths, from shallow water to deeper ponds and lakes. The plant is also highly adaptable, and can grow in both sunny and shady conditions.

Despite its many benefits, Slender Club-rush is not a commonly cultivated plant. This is in part because it is often difficult to find in nurseries and garden centers. However, the plant can be easily propagated from seed or by dividing mature plants.

Slender Club-rush is a valuable plant that offers many benefits to both the environment and human communities. Whether you are looking to improve water quality, create a beautiful water garden, or simply add a touch of elegance to your landscape, this plant is definitely worth considering.

Slender Club-rush is also known for its low maintenance requirements. Once established, the plant is relatively easy to care for and does not require frequent pruning or fertilization. This makes it an ideal choice for homeowners who want to enjoy the beauty of a water garden without having to invest a lot of time and effort into maintenance.

In addition to its ornamental value, Slender Club-rush also has a number of practical uses. The plant is often used in erosion control projects, as its extensive root system helps to stabilize shorelines and prevent soil erosion. It is also used in wetlands restoration projects, where it helps to reestablish native plant communities and improve water quality.

One important aspect to keep in mind when growing Slender Club-rush is its invasive potential. While the plant is not considered invasive in all areas, it can spread rapidly and outcompete native species in some ecosystems. It is therefore important to only plant Slender Club-rush in areas where it is not likely to become invasive.

Slender Club-rush is a versatile and valuable plant that offers a wide range of benefits to both the environment and human communities. Whether you are looking to create a beautiful water garden, control erosion, or simply add a touch of elegance to your landscape, this plant is definitely worth considering.

Distribution Map

Reproduced by kind permission of the BSBI.

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