Path Rush

Path_Rush_jpgThe Juncaceae family is commonly known as the Rush family.  The rush family includes eight genera and approximately three hundred species of grass-like plants.  In ancient times rushes were used to make roofs, writing instruments, bedding, caulking for ships and some were used to make arrows.  A more poetic use was for musical pipes.  In the Middle Ages rushes were used to cover cold stone floors and were swept away when dirty. The presence of rushes indicates damp soil or low meadows.

OtherCommonName:

Yard Rush

ScientificName:

Juncus tenuis

Community:

Edge

PlantStatus:

Native

LifeSpan:

Perennial

PlantHeight:

to 24 inches

FruitingTime:

Late May to September

Distribution:

Throughout North America ~ Statewide in New Jersey; infrequent in Pine Barrens

FloweringTime:

Late May to September

IdentifyingCharacteristics:

Stem flat, narrow, wiry ~ Leaves basal, flat, 1/3 to ½ height of stem, pale green ~ Drab tussocks ~ Flowers on the sides of the stem, single on a branch Consider the often quoted rhyme when identifying rushes: “Sedges have edges, Rushes are round,Grasses have joints from their tips to the ground.” The stems of rushes are round, like a knitting needle.