CYPERACEAE,  Sedge Family

Herbs, usually perennial; stem often triangular; leaves alternate, sometimes basal, cauline often 3·ranked. blades linear, sheaths usually closed; flowers hypogynous, each subtended by a bract (scale) and sometimes enclosed in a saclike bract (perigynium); flowers solitary or clustered in spikes or spikelets, the cluster often subtended by leaflike bracts; perianth none or of bristles or scales; stamens 1·6, usually 3; carpels 2-3, united; ovary 1-Ioculed; style 1 with 2-3 branches; fruit an achene.