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Protocol Information

J Chris Hoag
Wetland Plant Ecologist
Natural Resources Conservation Service - Aberdeen Plant Materials Center
PO Box 296
Aberdeen , Idaho 83210

Family Scientific Name: Cyperaceae
Family Common Name: Sedge family
Scientific Name: Carex nebrascensis Dewey
Common Name: Nebraska sedge
Species Code: CARNEB
Ecotype: from Trout Creek, near Jackpot, Nevada (Lat 41°48'N Long 115°7'W), and the Sterling Wildlife Management Area (WMA) near Aberdeen, Idaho (Lat 42°57'N Long 112°50'W).
General Distribution: C. nebrascensis is found in wet places, often where alkaline, from lowlands to mid montane elevations. It ranges from Washington to Calfornia, wholly east of the Cascades, east to South Dakota,Kansas, and Nebraska, and through the Rocky Mountain states to New Mexico.
Propagation Goal: Plants
Propagation Method: Seed
Product Type: Container (plug)
Stock Type: Germination techniques
Target Specifications: Height: n/a
Caliper: n/a
Root System: n/a
Propagule Collection: We collected achenes during September using a prairie seed stripper (Prairie Habitats, Argyle, Manitoba, Canada) and ran the material through a Jacobson hammer mill (Model “Little Jake”, Jacobson Machine Works Inc, Minneapolis, Minnesota) to break up the vegetative material and other large debris collected with achenes.
Propagule Processing: The material was run through a Clipper “Office” fanning mill with a No. 8 top screen, a No. 20 bottom screen, and the airflow adjusted to a very slow speed (Clipper, Blufton, Indiana). Cleaned achenes were stored about 8 to 12 mo at room temperature (22 °C [72 °F]) before use.
Pre-Planting Treatments: Germination of achenes is best after scarification and stratification. To scarify achenes with sandpaper, we use a scarification box that measures 10 X 14 X 2.5 cm (4 X 6 X 1 in) made out of pine lumber. The bottom of the box is lined with 100 grit sandpaper. A small piece of wood that fits into the box is wrapped with 100 grit sandpaper. We put about 60 to 100 achenes in the bottom of the box and using the block, lightly rub the achenes for about 10 to 15 sec. Place the achenes in a cloth or mess bag and then cold, moist stratify them with a sphagnum peat moss substratefor about 30 days at 3 °C (37 °F). During germination, keep temperatures very warm and the germination medium very moist. Diurnal temperatures of 26 °C (78 °F) and 37 °C (98 °F) work well. Achenes also germinate well when given a 24-h photoperiod.
Other Comments: The perigynium is a source of achene dormancy in Nebraska sedge. Perigynia can be removed by various methods, but brief, light rubbing of achenes with sandpaper is an easy method for small quantities. Some physiological dormancy also resides within the achene, and it is at least partially dissipated by 32 d of cold-moist stratification. Cold-moist stratification also improved germination rate. Total germination of scarified and stratified achenes was best when sphagnum peat moss was the stratification substrate.
References: Perigynium removal and cold-moist stratification improve germination of Carex nebrascensis (Nebraska sedge). Hoag, JC; Dumroese, RK; Sellers, ME. 2001. Native Plants Journal 2(1): in press.

Hoag, J. Chris 2001. Propagation protocol for production of container Carex nebrascensis Dewey plants (Germination techniques); Natural Resources Conservation Service - Aberdeen Plant Materials Center, Aberdeen , Idaho. In: Native Plant Network. URL: http://www.nativeplantnetwork.org (accessed 28 August 2015). Moscow (ID): University of Idaho, College of Natural Resources, Forest Research Nursery.