Ground Nut-Rush
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Ground Nut-Rush
P Native Photo: M. Sawmliana
Common name: Ground Nut-Rush • Malayalam: Katou-tsjolam, Ellarukki
Botanical name: Scleria terrestris    Family: Cyperaceae (Sedge family)
Synonyms: Zizania terrestris

Ground Nut-Rush is a perennial, runner-forming, grasslike herb. Stems are sparse, 0.6-3 m tall, 4-7 mm wide, 3-angled, often scabrous, hairless. Leaf sheaths are 1-8 cm, papery. Leaves are linear, 30-40 cm x 6-10 mm, papery, slightly scabrous, hairless. Involucral bracts are leaflike, basalmost up to 40 cm, sheathing; bractlets bristly, basally eared, ears slightly bristly. Flowers are borne in panicles, with 1-3 distant branches; branches 3-8 x 1.5-6 cm. Spikelets are 1(or 2) in a cluster, entirely unisexual, oblong-ovoid to narrowly ovoid, tip flat to tapering. Glumes of male spikelets 2-3 mm, thickly membranous, basal ones keeled and with rust-colored short lines, apical ones pale colored and scarious. Female spikelets usually growing at base of branch; glumes broadly ovate to ovate-lanceshaped, 2-4 mm wide, sometimes with rust-colored short lines, keeled, tip apiculate. Male spikelets 3-flowered. Nutlets are white or pale brown, spherical to ovoid, about 2.5 mm in diameter, sometimes 3-sided. Ground Nut-Rush is found in Tropical & Subtropical Asia to N. Australia. It is also found in the Himalayas up to altitudes of 2000 m. Flowering: May-October.

Identification credit: M. Sawmliana, Saroj Kasaju Photographed in Hmuifang, Mizoram.

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