Scirpus reticularis (Colenso) Edgar; Scirpus inundatus var. gracillimus Cheeseman; Isolepis inundatus var. gracillima (Cheeseman) W.R.B.Oliv.
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.
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.
2017 | Not Threatened
Previous conservation statuses
2012 | Not Threatened
2009 | Not Threatened
2004 | Not Threatened
Coastal to montane (rarely subalpine). Favouring riparian habitats in lowland forest but also colonising coastal seepages, or seepages within forest, lake and pond margins and occasionally the lagg zone of peat bogs. A common inhabitant of willow carr.
Wetland plant indicator status rating
Information derived from the revised national wetland plant list prepared to assist councils in delineating and monitoring wetlands (Clarkson et al., 2021 Manaaki Whenua – Landcare Research Contract Report LC3975 for Hawke’s Bay Regional Council). The national plant list categorises plants by the extent to which they are found in wetlands and not ‘drylands’. The indicator status ratings are OBL (obligate wetland), FACW (facultative wetland), FAC (facultative), FACU (facultative upland), and UPL (obligate upland).
FACW: Facultative Wetland
Usually is a hydrophyte but occasionally found in uplands (non-wetlands).
Rather delicate, finely tufted, drooping plants, loosely carpeting the ground with lax, filiform, light green culms. Culms 40–300 mm long, < 0.5 mm diameter, smooth, compressed. Leaves 1–3, similar to culms but usually much shorter, lower most leaf reduced to a sheath 10–15 mm long, red towards the base, often with a fine green mucro c.0.3–0.5 mm. long. Inflorescence apparently lateral, of 1-3(-5) spikelets, often proliferous; bract subtending inflorescence usually much > spikelets, often filiform. Spikelets 2.0–5.0(-7.0) × 1.0–1.5(-1.7) mm, oblong-ovate, usually pale green tinged with red. Glumes 1 to slightly < 2 mm. long, ovate-lanceolate, acute, pale straw-coloured, rather transparent, or sprinkled with dark red dots, or red-striped or almost black, margins entire, pinched in at the tip below the green, slightly excurrent keel, lateral nerves conspicuous. Hypogynous bristles 0. Stamens 1. Style-branches 3. Nut c.1.0 × 0.5 mm., from 2/3 length of glume to c. = glume, elliptical or obovoid, trigonous, pale straw-coloured, almost white, glossy, markedly apiculate, tip not dark.
Easily recognised by the flaccid growth habit, extremely fine (< 0.5 mm diameter) bright green culms, greenish spikelets, stamens 1-2 per glume (rarely 3 in the lower portion of spikelet), acute glumes 1-2 mm long, with the tip constricted beside the keel, and cream or white nut. The spikelets in this species are often proliferous.
September - December
October - March
Nuts are dispersed by water and possibly granivory and attachment (Thorsen et al., 2009).
Easily grown from fresh seed and by division of whole plants. Once established rather tolerant of a range of conditions but flourishes best in full sun in a permanently damp soil. An attractive pot plant but can become invasive in some situations.
isolepis: From the Greek isos (equal) and lepis (scale)
reticularis: In a net-like pattern
Description adapted from Moore and Edgar (1970).
References and further reading
Johnson, A. T. and Smith, H. A (1986). Plant Names Simplified: Their pronunciation, derivation and meaning. Landsman Bookshop Ltd: Buckenhill, UK.
Moore, L.B.; Edgar, E. 1970: Flora of New Zealand. Vol. II. Government Printer, Wellington.
Thorsen, M. J.; Dickinson, K. J. M.; Seddon, P. J. 2009. Seed dispersal systems in the New Zealand flora. Perspectives in Plant Ecology, Evolution and Systematics 11: 285-309