Posts categorized as Sedges

Te Papa in Botanical Bulletin

Ourisia_Taranaki

A new issue of the Wellington Botanical Society Bulletin has just been published. Included are three articles by Te Papa staff: • Curator Carlos Lehnebach describes his research on Uncinia hook-sedges. • Research Scientist Heidi Meudt writes about her study of Ourisia (native foxgloves). • I have co-authored an article illustrating, differentiating, and mapping each… Read more »

Folding up to save water

Cross section of a leaf of a hooked grass under the microscope. Photo by C.A. Lehnebach (c) Museum of New Zealand Te Papa Tongarewa.

Did you know that Hook Grasses can control water loss by folding up their leaves?  Contrary to their common name,  Hook Grasses are not grasses but Sedges and they belong to the family Cyperaceae.  Sedges are commonly found in wet or poorly drained habitats. Hook Grasses, however, can be found in a much greater diversity of habitats. In New Zealand, Hook Grasses can grow… Read more »

About hooks, hairy legs and sedges!!

  • Mature spike of Uncinia caespitosa indicating female and male sections. Photo by C.A. Lehnebach (c) Museum of New Zealand Te Papa Tongarewa.
  • Male flowers of Uncinia and detail of stamens. Photo by C.A. Lehnebach (c) Museum of New Zealand Te Papa Tongarewa.
  • Seed (achene) of a native hook sedge. Photo by C.A. Lehnebach (c) Museum of New Zealand Te Papa Tongarewa.
  • achene

Tramping in New Zealand forests can be an enjoyable and very relaxing activity. However, if your legs are hairy, it could be a painful and very annoying experience. Camouflaged among ferns and ground orchids, hook grasses are waiting, ready to clasp to the hairs or clothing of any unwary tramper. Hook grasses get their name… Read more »