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Carex pensylvanica

Pennsylvania Sedge

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This sedge forms short clusters and spreads slowly by rhizomes to form a lush carpet. This thick mat of growth provides excellent seasonal cover for foraging small songbirds and the insects and other small animals they love to eat. Reddish-brown, thimble-like flowers top the narrow, fine textured leaves in spring. A number of birds and small mammals feed on the seeds.

Benefits

  • Excellent ground cover for dry shade
  • Provides seasonal cover for birds and other woodland wildlife
  • Birds and small mammals feed on the seed
  • Semi-evergreen lawn alternative
  • Deer resistant

Homeowner Growing and Maintenance Tips

Grows easily in full sun, part shade and shade. Ideal for planting under deciduous trees. Plant in well-drained soil with average moisture. Will grow in infertile, slightly acidic soil, dry soil.


Height
6-8 Inches

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Spread
6-8 Inches

USDA Hardiness Zone 4-8

Native Range

From Southern Maine west to Wisconsin south to Arkansas and Georgia.

Native Trivia

Most ornamental sedges grow best in moist or wet soil, but Pennsylvania Sedge is an exception to that rule. It thrives in dry soil and remains lush while binding the soil with its dense roots.

Good Companions
Southern Bush Honeysuckle (Diervilla sessilifolia), Piedmont roseling or spiderwort (Callisia rosea)

Characteristics & Attributes

Shade
Sun
Songbirds
Deer Resistant
Ground cover
Plan Sub Group
Low Grasses
Exposure
Filtered Shade
Morning Sun / Afternoon Shade
Soil Moisture Preference
Average
Dry
Attracts Wildlife
Mammals
Bloom Time
Early Spring
Habitat Collection
Dry Shade
Songbird
Foliage Color
Green
Red-Purple
Native to
Alabama
Arkansas
Connecticut
Delaware
District of Columbia
Georgia
Illinois
Indiana
Iowa
Kentucky
Maryland
Massachusetts
Michigan
Minnesota
Mississippi
Missouri
New Hampshire
New Jersey
New York
North Carolina
North Dakota
Ohio
Pennsylvania
Rhode Island
South Carolina
South Dakota
Tennessee
Vermont
Virginia
West Virginia
Wisconsin