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Eleocharis rostellata (Beaked spikerush)
Brundage, Stephanie

Eleocharis rostellata

Eleocharis rostellata (Torr.) Torr.

Beaked Spikerush, Leap Frog Spike Rush

Cyperaceae (Sedge Family)

Synonym(s): Eleocharis rostellata var. congdonii, Eleocharis rostellata var. occidentalis, Scirpus rostellatus

USDA Symbol: ELRO2

USDA Native Status: L48 (N), PR (N), CAN (N)

Grass-like perennial with stems that are 20-100 cm long; 1-2 mm wide and clustered on a rootstock.


From the Image Gallery

3 photo(s) available in the Image Gallery

Plant Characteristics

Duration: Perennial
Habit: Grass/Grass-like
Root Type: Aerial , Fibrous
Leaf Retention: Evergreen
Leaf Arrangement: Alternate
Leaf Complexity: Simple
Leaf Shape: Linear
Leaf Venation: Parallel
Inflorescence: Spikelet
Fruit Type: Achene
Size Notes: Up to about 3 feet tall.
Flower: Flowers 3-5mm long

Bloom Information

Bloom Color: Green , Brown
Bloom Time: May , Jun , Jul , Aug , Sep , Oct
Bloom Notes: Perianth absent. Bloom time denotes fruiting period for Eleocharis spp.


USA: AL , AZ , CA , CO , CT , DE , FL , GA , ID , IL , IN , KS , MA , MD , ME , MI , MN , MT , NC , ND , NE , NJ , NM , NV , NY , OH , OK , OR , PA , RI , SC , SD , TX , UT , VA , WA , WI , WV , WY
Canada: NS

Growing Conditions

Water Use: High
Light Requirement: Part Shade
Soil Moisture: Wet
CaCO3 Tolerance: Medium
Soil Description: Beaked spikerush occurs in saline or alkaline wetlands


Use Wildlife: Waterfowl eat the stems, roots, and achenes of spikerush. Spikerush palatability is low for livestock and wildlife.
Interesting Foliage: yes
Deer Resistant: High

National Wetland Indicator Status

This information is derived from the U.S. Army Corps of Engineers National Wetland Plant List, Version 3.1 (Lichvar, R.W. 2013. The National Wetland Plant List: 2013 wetland ratings. Phytoneuron 2013-49: 1-241). Click here for map of regions.

From the National Organizations Directory

According to the species list provided by Affiliate Organizations, this plant is on display at the following locations:

Lady Bird Johnson Wildflower Center - Austin, TX
Nueces River Authority - Uvalde, TX

Web Reference

Webref 38 - Flora of North America (2019) Missouri Botanical Garden, St. Louis, MO & Harvard University Herbaria, Cambridge, MA.
Webref 23 - Southwest Environmental Information Network (2009) SEINet - Arizona Chapter

Additional resources

USDA: Find Eleocharis rostellata in USDA Plants
FNA: Find Eleocharis rostellata in the Flora of North America (if available)
Google: Search Google for Eleocharis rostellata


Record Modified: 2023-02-08
Research By: DEW, JSC, ADA, TMH

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