Uncinia leptostachya Raoul
Vascular – Native
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.
2n = 88
Current conservation status
The threat classification status of all known New Zealand vascular plant taxa at the rank of species and below were reassessed in 2017 using the New Zealand Threat Classification System (NZTCS) – more information about this can be found on the NZTCS website This report includes a statistical summary and brief notes on changes since 2012 and replaces all previous NZTCS lists for vascular plants. Authors: By Peter J. de Lange, Jeremy R. Rolfe, John W. Barkla, Shannel P. Courtney, Paul D. Champion, Leon R. Perrie, Sarah M. Beadel, Kerry A. Ford, Ilse Breitwieser, Ines Schönberger, Rowan Hindmarsh-Walls, Peter B. Heenan and Kate Ladley. Please note, threat classifications are often suggested by authors when publications fall between NZTCS assessment periods – a suggested threat classification status has not been assessed by the NZTCS panel.
2018 | At Risk – Declining
Previous conservation statuses
2017 | At Risk – Declining | Qualifiers: DP, Sp
2012 | Not Threatened
2009 | Not Threatened
2004 | Not Threatened
Endemic. New Zealand: North Island (southern third only), South Island (mostly eastern, as far south as Dunedin, very scarce in the west)
Mostly coastal, in open forest and scrub, rarely bordering wetlands and saltmarsh.
Rather stout, wiry, densely tufted, glaucous to dark green plants. Culms 300–700 mm long, < 1 mm diameter, initially distinctly scabrid above, becoming faintly so when mature; lower basal sheaths dark brown, uppermost sheath bright pink above. Leaves 1-3 per culm, < culms, usually c. 1 mm wide and involute, rarely up to 2 mm wide and flat, scabrid on the margins and upper surface. Spikes 40-150 × 2–3 mm, female flowers c. 10-20(-26), distant, internodes up to 15 mm long at base of spike, decreasing to 4 mm long above. Glumes < utricles, persistent, ± obtuse, subcoriaceous, or membranous, midrib conspicuous, green, remainder hyaline, colourless or red-tinged. Utricles 5-7 × c.1 mm, plano-convex, oblong, nerved on the dorsal side, scarcely stipitate, very slightly narrowed to a scabrid beak slightly < 2 mm long
The scabrid utricles and lax-flowered inflorescences are also typical of Carex healyi K.A.Ford and C. subviridis K.A.Ford, two species which are usually found well inland in densely forested habitats. From these Carex cyanea differs by the narrow, inrolled usually glaucous leaves. The uppermost leaf-sheath of Carex cyanea is pinkish coloured like C. erythrovaginata K.A.Ford. However that species differs by the glabrous utricles and wider, usually flat leaves. Carex cyanea could be confused with C. strictissima (Kük.) K.A.Ford which has red-coloured sheaths, however, that species has a very distinctive rush like growth habit.
October - November (-December)
November - July
Easily grown from fresh seed and by division of established plants. Prefers a permanently moist, peaty soil but will grow in most substrates. Best in semi-shade.
carex: Latin name for a species of sedge, now applied to the whole group.
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.
NZPCN Fact Sheet citation
Please cite as: de Lange, P.J. (Year at time of access): Carex cyanea Fact Sheet (content continuously updated). New Zealand Plant Conservation Network. https://www.nzpcn.org.nz/flora/species/carex-cyanea/ (Date website was queried)