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Sedges: Carex
by Robert H. Mohlenbrock
illustrated by Paul W. Nelson
Southern Illinois University Press, 1999
Cloth: 978-0-8093-2074-5
Library of Congress Classification QK495.C997M63
Dewey Decimal Classification 584.8409773

Sedges: Carex is the fourteenth volume of the Illustrated Flora of Illinois series and the sixth and last volume devoted to monocots, or plants that have a single seed-leaf, or cotyledon, upon germination. For each of the 159 species of Carex in Illinois, there is a full illustration showing the habit of the plant and close-ups of various vegetative and reproductive structures that are crucial for the identification of the individual species. There is also a complete description of each species as well as a discussion of the nomenclature and habitats. Range maps show the county distribution of each species in Illinois. A detailed key is provided for identification of the species.

Unique in several respects, Carex is by far the most numerous genus of plants in Illinois. Because of the vast number of species, the similarity of many of the species, and the relatively small size of the critical reproductive structures, the members of this genus are extremely confusing to identify. This book, with its detailed descriptions, key, and precise illustrations, should aid the interested person in the identification of these plants.

Since more than three-fourths of the species of Carex in Illinois are inhabitants of wetlands, an understanding of the genus is critical for those working in wetlands. Amateur and professional botanists will find the information extremely valuable, as well as environmental and conservation groups, garden clubs, farm bureaus, home extension groups, scout organizations, and school libraries. Persons working in natural areas programs and in rare and endangered species programs and those working on environmental impact assessments and wildlife management projects will also find the information pertinent.


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