Carex gaudichaudiana

Tufted Sedge, Fen Sedge

Family: Cyperaceae

This is a loosely-tufted sedge to 40 cm tall with creeping rhizome. It grows in wet areas (swamps and creekbanks) from near sea level to alpine areas. It is widespread – growing along the entire coastal and tablelands subdivisions and into the western slopes. Also in Qld, Vic, Tas and South Australia. Also in NZ.

Leaves are linear, to 1 metre or more long and only 4 mm wide.

The flowering stems (culms) are usually shorter than the leaves and rough to the touch. Dark purplish brown flowers are produced in dense linear spikes, in spring and summer and often after rain if growing in a dry position. Flowers are grass-like with reduced perianth parts and glumes.

In the garden

Grows best in full sun in damp places although author has them growing in quite shady places. Around pools or front edge of garden beds.

Attractive in group planting.

Can become invasive as they seed freely. To prevent this cut of flower/seed stems before seeds set.

Pest free.


Division (easy) or from seed.

Other information

Can likely regenerate from seedbank if burnt as well as reshoot from buried rhizomes.

Carex – the Latin name for sedge.
gaudichaudiana – named in Honour of Charles Gaudichaud-Beaupre (1789-1854) – a French botanist who accompanied Louis de Freycinet on his circumnavigation of the earth and collected plants in Australia.

Not known to be at risk in the wild.


By Jeff Howes