Scientific Name:
Eleocharis sphacelata R.Br., Prodr. Fl. Nov. Holland. 224 (1810)
Vernacular Name(s):
Bamboo spike sedge; Kuta; Paopao; Tall spike sedge

Rhizome creeping, very stout and woody, 1–1.5 cm. diam. Culms 30–90 cm. × 4–12 mm., in a close-packed, linear series, with internal transverse septa externally distinct at intervals of 1–10 cm., interspersed with septa not visible externally; basal sheaths grey, papery, with an oblique orifice; roots c. 2 mm. diam., red-brown, in a group of up to 5 from the base of each culm. Spikelet (2)–2.5–5–(7) × 0.5–1 cm., cylindrical, with an acute tip. Lowest glume sterile, almost completely surrounding base of spikelet, very short; upper glumes ∞, closely imbricate, 6–8 mm. long, obovate-oblong, obtuse, not keeled but with a strong median nerve and ∞ fine lateral nerves. Hypog. bristles 6–10, us. > nut, with rather large, sparse, retrorse teeth. Stamens 3. Style normally 3-fid, occ. stigmas 2, or all connate to the tip. Nut 2–2.5 mm. long (excluding persistent style-base), orbicular, biconvex, the surface covered with hexagonal reticulations, pale brown, surmounted by the persistent, dark brown, conic, swollen base of the style.

[From: Moore and Edgar (1970) Flora of New Zealand. Volume 2.]

Indigenous (Endemic)
Brown, R. 1810: Prodromus Florae Novae Hollandiae et Insulae Van-Diemen. Johnson, London.
de Lange, P.J.; Rolfe, J.R.; Barkla J.W.; Courtney, S.P.; Champion, P.D.; Perrie, L.R.; Beadel, S.N.; Ford, K.A.; Breitwieser, I.; Schönberger, I.; Hindmarsh-Walls, R.; Heenan, P.B.; Ladley, K. 2018: Conservation status of New Zealand indigenous vascular plants, 2017. New Zealand Threat Classification Series. No. 22. [Not Threatened]
de Lange, P.J.; Rolfe, J.R.; Champion, P.D.; Courtney, S.P.; Heenan, P.B.; Barkla, J.W.; Cameron, E.K.; Norton, D.A.; Hitchmough, R.A. 2013: Conservation status of New Zealand indigenous vascular plants, 2012. New Zealand Threat Classification Series 3. Department of Conservation, Wellington. [Not Threatened]