A perennial of wet ground, pools and hummocks in Sphagnum bogs, or at the edges of gently sloping mires where there is slight lateral water movement; such sites often occur on watersheds. It generally occurs in open ground, but sometimes persists in carr. From 30 m (Shian, Mid Perth), but generally upland, reaching 685 m (Ben Lui, Main Argyll).
A rhizomatous perennial herb found in short vegetation in damp dune-slacks and on open sand, often close to freshwater seepages or where streams debouch onto the shore. It is mobile and can colonise new sites with suitable habitat. Populations can be very large. Lowland.
A shortly-rhizomatous perennial herb of base-rich flushes on gently sloping or `stepped` ground on micaceous silt or gravel. Also, occasionally, on steep burn-sides downstream of large colonies. Reproduction appears to be mainly vegetative. Between 610 m and 975 m on Ben Lawers (Mid Perth).
This perennial herb was thought to be confined to rough, open grassland on limestone. However, recent studies have shown that it grows at these sites only where non-calcareous drift overlays the calcareous bedrock, and it can in fact thrive in neutral to acidic grassland, on heathland and in woodland rides, often in partial shade. Generally lowland, but reaching 560 m at Carreg yr Ogof (Carms.).
A tufted perennial herb of well-drained, light, sometimes sandy, soils, which is able to tolerate rather more acidic substrates than C. spicata. It is found on hedge banks, earth-filled walls and roadsides, in rough meadows, heathland and on rocky slopes, and is somewhat intolerant of shade. Generally lowland, but reaching 335 m at Cae Gaer (Cards.).
This perennial herb is confined to dry habitats over limestone, being found on limestone pavements, ledges, grassy slopes and scree; some sites are shaded. Generally lowland, but reaching 340 m in Ribblesdale (Mid-W. Yorks.).
C. nigra occurs in a wide range of wet habitats, avoiding only those which are extremely basic or acidic. It is found in fens, fen-meadows, bogs, streamsides and flushes, wet grassland and dune-slacks. This sedge is morphologically very variable: tussock forms may occur in stagnant, acidic sites, and rhizomatous tufted variants are known from calcareous mires. 0-1005 m (Beinn Heasgarnich, Mid Perth).
C. norvegica is a perennial herb of wet, stony slopes, ledges and turf over basic rock and with base-rich run-off. All the sites have a mainly N.-facing aspect, and occur in places where snow lies late. Populations are usually quite small and of very limited extent. From 700 m at Corrie Fee (Angus) to 975 m on Beinn Heasgarnich (Mid Perth).
A perennial herb of skeletal, well-drained soils on S.-facing slopes overlying Carboniferous limestone. It grows in open grassland, on rocky outcrops, screes, crags and limestone pavements, and occasionally also in partial shade in open limestone woodland. Lowland to 600 m on Long Fell, Warcop (Westmorland).
A perennial of wet habitats, usually on heavy soils. It is found on the sides of streams and ponds, in ditches, swamps, wet lowland meadows and pastures, at the upper edge of saltmarshes, and, less commonly, on damp roadsides and hedge banks. In N. England and Scotland it is essentially a coastal plant. It generally grows in slightly drier conditions than C. vulpina, tending to avoid standing water. Lowland.