Red Bluff Dwarf Rush
(Juncus leiospermus var. leiospermus )
Juncaceae (rush family)
Photo by Joe Molter, BLM
Description: Inconspicuous grass-like annual, 3/4 to 4-3/4 inches (2 to 12 cm) tall, often turning reddish-brown; bracts inconspicuous; leaves basal, less than 3/4 length of stem: flowers usually 2 to 7, in terminal heads: fruit round to oblong.
Distribution: Within the public lands administered by the BLM's Redding Field Office, found in the upper Sacramento Valley on floor and lower foothill terraces from northern Butte, Tehama and southern Shasta counties.
Habitat: At the edges of vernal pools and swales. Generally found between 300 to 1000 feet (90 to 305 meters), but reaches 3350 feet (1020 meters) in the Goose Valley area. Often in small, sparsely vegetated habitats.
Flowering Period: Late April to early June.
Similar Plants: Very similar to Ahart's dwarf rush (Juncus leiospermus var. ahartii) (which has solitary terminal flowers). Often growing with Juncus capitatus (which has hemispheric heads with the lowest bract exceeding the head), toad rush (Juncus bufonius) (which has solitary flowers at the nodes), and Juncus uncialis (which is less than 3.5 cm tall and has solitary flowers with short styles).
Status: BLM Sensitive, California Native Plant Society List 1B