There are five species of umbrella-grasses native to Florida (Wunderlin, 2003). They might be noticed as tallish green stems growing in large colonies in the water, or as short plants growing in clumps on the shore, all kinds having bristly “cones” on stem tips. Umbrella-grasses occur in the south, the southeast, and extend as far west as AZ in the U.S.; they are also found in a few states in the northeast and several of the plains states; and in PR and Ontario, Canada (Kartesz, 1999).
Umbrella-grasses are umbrella-grass sedges. Stems to 2 ft. tall, jointed, unbranched; leaf blades none or very reduced; inflorescence at stem tip, single spikelet or cluster of 2-several; bracts small, leaf-like; spikelets often bur-like, bristly, green-to-brown, to 1/2 in., blunt, ovoid; nutlet 3-sided.