Flora of the Canadian Arctic Archipelago

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S.G. Aiken, M.J. Dallwitz, L.L. Consaul, C.L. McJannet, R.L. Boles, G.W. Argus, J.M. Gillett, P.J. Scott, R. Elven, M.C. LeBlanc, L.J. Gillespie, A.K. Brysting, H. Solstad, and J.G. Harris

Luzula DC.

English: Wood rush,

Inuktitut: Iviit, ivisuka, ivitsuskaka.

Juncaceae, Rush family.

Published in In Lam. and DC., nom. cons., Fl. Franc., éd. 3, 1: 198. 1805.

Vegetative morphology. Plants 2.5–40 cm high (mean approximately 20 cm high); perennial herbs; caespitose. Only fibrous roots present. Ground level or underground stems horizontal, or vertical, or absent; rhizomatous; compact. Aerial stems erect. Leaves mainly basal; alternate; marcescent. Petioles absent. Sheaths present; It looks as though the margins are initially fused but split open early. Not an easy character to observe accurately in this genus. Ligules absent. Leaves grass-like. Blades 10–150 mm long, 0.6–6(–8) mm wide, straight, linear, flat or involute or channelled, veins parallel. Blade adaxial surface glabrous. Blade abaxial surface glabrous. Blade margins with non-glandular hairs (usually with a few long unbranched hairs); apices acuminate (sometimes with calloused tips).

Reproductive morphology. Flowering stems circular or oval in cross section, or squarish in cross section. Flowering stems with leaves. Leaf or reduced bract subtending the base of the inflorescence present; conspicuous and leaf-like, or reduced, or scale-like; exceeding the inflorescence, or shorter than the apex of the inflorescence. Inflorescences paniculate, or cymose, or head-like; dense, or diffuse; 0.5–8 cm long. Pedicels present (between flowering clusters), or absent (individual flowers). Individual spike(s) erect, or ascending, or pendent. Floral bracts apices lacerate. Flowers per inflorescence 5–80; small. Sepals conventional (brown tepals); 3; free; 1.6–4 mm wide; brown, or purple; scarious. Calyx tip mucronate, or tip not mucronate; glabrous. Petals conventional (brown tepals); free; same length as the calyx; 3; brown; ovate, or lanceolate; unlobed; 1.8–3 mm long. Stamens 6. Anthers 0.4–0.9 mm long. Ovary superior; carpels 3; syncarpous. Styles 3 (there is a fused portion at the top of the ovary); free. Stigmas per ovary 3. Ovules per ovary 3. Fruit sessile; with calyx persisting; dry; a capsule; ovoid; black, or brown; 1.3–2.8 mm long; 0.9–1.3 mm wide; not distinctly flattened; dehiscent. Styles persisting but not modified. Seeds 3; 0.9–1.6 mm long; brown; surfaces smooth, hairy, ridged.

North American distribution. Range in the Canadian Arctic Archipelago widespread, or limited, or moderate. Common, uncommon. Arctic, alpine.


This publication is available on the internet (posted May 2011) and on CD-ROM (published in 2007). These versions are identical in content, except that the errata page for CD-ROM is accessible on the main index page of the web version.

Recommended citation for the web-based version of this publication: Aiken, S.G., Dallwitz, M.J., Consaul, L.L., McJannet, C.L., Boles, R.L., Argus, G.W., Gillett, J.M., Scott, P.J., Elven, R., LeBlanc, M.C., Gillespie, L.J., Brysting, A.K., Solstad, H., and Harris, J.G. 2007. Flora of the Canadian Arctic Archipelago: Descriptions, Illustrations, Identification, and Information Retrieval. NRC Research Press, National Research Council of Canada, Ottawa. http://nature.ca/aaflora/data, accessed on DATE.

Recommended citation for the CD-ROM version of this publication: Aiken, S.G., Dallwitz, M.J., Consaul, L.L., McJannet, C.L., Boles, R.L., Argus, G.W., Gillett, J.M., Scott, P.J., Elven, R., LeBlanc, M.C., Gillespie, L.J., Brysting, A.K., Solstad, H., and Harris, J.G. 2007. Flora of the Canadian Arctic Archipelago: Descriptions, Illustrations, Identification, and Information Retrieval. [CD-ROM] NRC Research Press, National Research Council of Canada, Ottawa.

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