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Pennsylvania Sedge

Scientific name: Carex pensylvanica

What is a sedge? How are they different from a grass? At a glance, it may look like a grass. But its triangular edges and fountain-like clumps, as well as its shade-tolerance, set it apart.

Sedges have edges,
Rushes are round,
Grasses have nodes from the top to the ground.

This sedge grows from 1-3 feet high.

Pennsylvania Sedge


The blades are light green in spring and turn to a sandy brown in the fall.


Dry and well-drained soils. Especially likely to be found in forests dominated by oak, pine and/or hickory.

Human Connections

This makes an excellent ground cover as it spreads by rhizomes, all on its own. And it tolerates shade so it is perfect if you want a groundcover beneath your trees, where little else but non-native pachysandra will grow. Best to start with plugs, rather than seeds. It is also resistant to deer grazing.

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