Bogs and Acidic Peatlands of Southern New England by Marsha C. Salett
Xyris difformis Chapm.
XYRIDACEAE (Yellow-eyed Grass Family)
EtymologyXyris is possibly from the Greek: xyro = razor; difformis is Latin for of differing or unusual shape.
DescriptionA low-medium perennial herb 6 -- 40" tall, yellow-eyed grass grows in tuft-like, grassy clumps. The yellow flowers bloom on a scaly, spherical or cylindrical head atop a naked stalk that grows taller than the leaves. X. difformis is the most common of the four yellow-eyed grass species native to New England.
Wetland indicator statusOBL
Plant Height6-40 inches
LeavesBasal in tuft-like cluster; linear or elliptical-linear; 4-20" long, to 1/2" wide.
Flower/InflorescenceYellow, tiny (1/4"), 3 petals, 3 unequal sepals; in axils of overlapping, brownish scales on small (3/8 -5/8"), egg-shaped to round head.
Flowering PeriodJuly-September
FruitSmall capsule, 3-parted, with many seeds.
HabitatBogs, pond margins; wet, sandy soil.
RangeSouthern Maine to Michigan; south to Florida and Texas.
(c) 1998-2006 Marsha C. Salett