Carex subviridis


Carex: Latin name for a species of sedge, now applied to the whole group.

Common Name(s)

Hook sedge, bastard grass, hook grass

Current Conservation Status

2012 - Not Threatened

Conservation status of New Zealand indigenous vascular plants, 2012
The conservation status of all known New Zealand vascular plant taxa at the rank of species and below were reassessed in 2012 using the New Zealand Threat Classification System (NZTCS). This report includes a statistical summary and brief notes on changes since 2009 and replaces all previous NZTCS lists for vascular plants. Authors: Peter J. de Lange, Jeremy R. Rolfe, Paul D. Champion, Shannel P. Courtney, Peter B. Heenan, John W. Barkla, Ewen K. Cameron, David A. Norton and Rodney A. Hitchmough. File size: 792KB

Previous Conservation Status

2009 - Not Threatened
2004 - Not Threatened


Carex subviridis K.A.Ford



Flora Category

Vascular - Native

NVS Species Code


The National Vegetation Survey (NVS) Databank is a physical archive and electronic databank containing records of over 94,000 vegetation survey plots - including data from over 19,000 permanent plots. NVS maintains a standard set of species code abbreviations that correspond to standard scientific plant names from the Ngä Tipu o Aotearoa - New Zealand Plants database.

Structural Class



Uncinia distans Col. ex Boott; Uncinia nelmesii Hamlin


Endemic. New Zealand. North and South Islands. Often sparsely distributed but locally common in the Bay of Plenty, Waikato, Auckland and Northland.


Coastal to montane. Usually in forest, especially alluvial and riparian forest, or in dune forest. Also common in karst country around sink holes, tomo and within dolines..


Rather gracile, very light- to dark green, tussock-forming, plants. Culms 250.0-600.0 × 0.5 mm, slightly scabrid above; basal sheaths light brown or reddish, occasionally enclosing the culm for more than half its length. Leaves 4-7 per culm, <, = or > culms, 1.5-3.0 mm wide, sharply scabrid on margins, slightly scabrid on upper surface towards tip. Spikes 40-140 mm long, often bracteate, lowermost glumes occasionally leaf-like and much > spike, male portion relatively long, female flowers c.10–20, ± distant, internodes 6-12 mm long below, 2 mm long above. Glumes < utricles, deciduous, acute, lower 2-3 acuminate and often produced to a scabrid awn, membranous, green. Utricles 5.5-9.0 × c.1.0 mm., plano-convex, narrow-oblong, light green or light brown, distinctly nerved, beak 1.5-2.0 mm long, narrow, with scabrid margins and occasionally a few teeth on the abaxial surface, stipe 1.5-2.0 mm long, narrow

Similar Taxa

Carex hamlinii K.A.Ford, another fine-leaved hook sedge has a superficial resemblance to C. subviridiss. Both species have a similar gracile growth habit, and rather fine light-green leaves and lax inflorescences. However, Carex hamlinii is a more southerly species of higher altitude forest, which is easily distinguished from C. subviridis by its glabrous rather than scabrid utricles. In the northern part of its range Carex subviridis may grow with another fine-leaved species Carex banksiana K.A.Ford, from which it differs by its greater stature, and scabrid rather than glabrous utricles.


October - December


November - June

Propagation Technique

Easily grown from fresh seed and by division of established plants - though these may take a while to settle. Prefers moist soil in a a semi-shaded site. However, once established will tolerate a wide range of conditions except waterlogging.


Not Threatened

Chromosome No.

2n = 88

Endemic Taxon


Endemic Genus


Endemic Family


Where To Buy

Not Commercially Available



Description adapted from Moore and Edgar (1970). Fact sheet prepared by Peter J. de Lange 17 August 2006.

References and further reading

 Moore, L.B.; Edgar, E. 1970: Flora of New Zealand. Vol. II. Government Printer, Wellington.

This page last updated on 26 Aug 2015