Luzula campestris (L.) DC.

Wood Rush

Luzula campestris plant

Family - Juncaceae

Stems - To +20cm tall, erect, herbaceous, cespitose, from fibrous roots, with small bulblets at the base, multiple from the base.

Leaves - Basal leaves many, to +6cm long, 5-9mm broad, glabrous above and below but with long pilose margins, green, entire, acuminate. Cauline leaves with a closed sheath, to 7-8cm long, +/-5mm broad, glabrous but with long-pilose margins (especially at joint with the stem), acuminate, 2-4 per stem. Sheaths glabrous.

Luzula campestris basalsBasal leaves.

Luzula campestris leaf baseBase of leaf with long pilose hairs.

Inflorescence - Terminal umbel or panicle of ovoid flower clusters. Clusters to 9mm long, 5-7mm in diameter. Bracts at the base of the peduncles foliaceous, shorter than the peduncles. Peduncles to +2.5cm long, erect to slightly spreading, glabrous. Bracteoles at the base of the flowers white-scarious, glabrous, 3mm long, ovoid-triangular, ciliate-margined, erose, typically 1-3 per flower. Flowers sessile, +/-20 per cluster. Central cluster of the inflorescence often sessile.

Luzula campestris inflorescenceInflorescence.

Flowers - Sepals and petals 3, similar, green at the base, shiny chestnut-brown and with scarious margins apically, acuminate, to 3mm long, 1mm broad at the base, erect. Stamens 6, opposite the petals and sepals, erect. Filaments green, glabrous, .3mm long. Anthers yellow, 1mm long. Ovary superior, globose-ovoid, green, glabrous, .6mm long, .6mm in diameter in flower, 3-locular. Style 1, -1mm long, glabrous, green. Stigmas 3, +1mm long. Capsules shorter than the perianth, 3-seeded.

Luzula campestris flowersFlowers.

Luzula campestris fruitsFruits.

Flowering - April - June.

Habitat - Dry upland forests, mesic upland forests in ravines, upland prairies.

Origin - Native to U.S.

Other info. - This species is found in the southern half of Missouri. It is the only species of its genus in the state.
Steyermark listed only one species in the flora, L. bulbosa (A.W. Wood) Smyth. Since that time other species have been reported in the state. The different taxa are now listed as varieties of L. campestris. There are three. See page 480 of "The Flora of Missouri, Volume 1" by Yatskievych for more details on the different varieties.

Photographs taken in Brown Summit, NC., 4-6-03, and off Hwy 82 near Hector, AL., 3-18-06.