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Flatspike sedge
Abildgaardia ovata

Copyright by: Eric Fleites

General Landscape Uses: Primarily recommended for natural landscapes and habitat restorations.

Ecological Restoration Notes: An occasional understory herb in pine rocklands.

Availability: Grown by enthusiasts.

Description: Small, fine-textured grasslike herb.

Dimensions: Typically 3-6 inches in height; to 12 inches when in flower. About as broad as tall.

Growth Rate: Moderate.

Range: Monroe and Miami-Dade counties; disjunct in Citrus and Hernando counties; West Indies, Mexico, Central America, South America and the Old World tropics. In the Monroe County Keys, disjunct from Miami-Dade County to Bahia Honda, Big Pine Key and nearby islands.

Map of select IRC data from peninsular Florida.

Habitats: Pine rocklands, marl prairie and coastal uplands.

Soils: Moist, well-drained limestone soils, without humus.

Nutritional Requirements: Low; it grows in nutrient poor soils.

Salt Water Tolerance: Low; does not tolerate long-term flooding by salt or brackish water.

Salt Wind Tolerance: Moderate; grows near salt water, but is protected from direct salt spray by other vegetation.

Drought Tolerance: High; does not require any supplemental water once established.

Light Requirements: Full sun.

Flower Color: Yellowish-green inflorescence.

Flower Characteristics: Inconspicuous.

Flowering Season: All year.

Fruit: Inconspicuous achene.

Wildlife and Ecology: Possible larval host plant for grass-skipper butterflies.

Horticultural Notes: Can be grown from seed.

Comments: A very attractive small fine-textured herb for sunny rockland gardens.

Copyright by: Eric Fleites

Other data on Abildgaardia ovata available from:

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