Drooping sedge flower spikes Photo Credit: (c) Bruce N. Newhouse, courtesy of OregonFlora
Also known as: hanging sedge, weeping sedge, pendulous sedge
Drooping sedge is a prolific seeder. Given the right conditions a single plant can produce up to 20,000 seeds annually! These seeds spread to new areas by floating downstream or being carried by boots, clothing, animals’ fur, and equipment.
|Life Cycle:||Perennial (life cycle lasts more than one year)|
|Early Detection and Rapid Response species:||No|
|Height:||3 – 6 feet (1 – 2 meters)|
|Leaf Description:||Hairless leaves are long and wide. They are yellow-green on top and dull green to blue green on bottom.|
It doesn’t lose it’s leaves in the winter which helps identify it from other sedges.
|Fruit & Flower Description:||Small flowers grow in clusters long spikes that are flexible and hang from stems. Male flowers hang from the end of the stem while female flowers droop from below the stem.|
Its small, black seeds are smooth and ripen in the summer.
|Bloom Time:||March to May|
- Drooping sedge is commonly found in or near wetlands, riparian areasRiparian Areas Areas of land that occur along the edges of rivers, streams, lakes, and other bodies of water., ditches, and roadsides.
- It typically grows in full to partially shady environments and damp to wet soils.
- Drooping sedge spreads by seed. A single plant can produce as many as 20,000 seeds annually!
- Its ability to quickly spread allows it to easily outcompete native wetland species, creating a monocultureMonoculture A single crop or plant species in an area..
What you can do about it:
- There are many native sedges that look like drooping sedge, so it is important that it is correctly identified before attempting to control it. It’s best to consult with a weed identification professional before trying to treat it.
- Individual plants can be dug up with a shovel in the late-winter or early-spring before it has set seed. Make sure to remove all the roots to prevent re-sprouting. Place all plant material in a tied plastic bag and dispose of it in the trash – not yard debris.
- Manual treatment is not recommended for controlling large infestations because it can re-sprout from fragmented rhizomes.
Many native sedges, including slough sedge (Carex obnupta), look like dropping sedge. Generally, slough sedge is smaller, with shorter flower spikes. Slough sedge’s leaves are also thinner than drooping sedge.
Noxious Weed Listing:
|State of Oregon:||Watch|
|State of Washington:||Monitor|
For more detailed information, download the Drooping Sedge Best Management Practices Factsheet
- Clackamas SWCD Weedwise: Drooping sedge