Ramensk’s sedge
Carex ramenskii
n = 1
III.A.3.i. Halophytic Sedge Wet Meadow
Ecosystem: Tidal


The Ramensk’s sedge (Carex rameskii) type is well known for coastal Alaska.

Ramensk’s sedge (Carex rameskii) forms a nearly monotypic (single species) dense stand in the protected tidal zone just below a Lyngbye’s sedge (Carex lyngbyei) zone.  This is the first tidally influenced zone where the ground is nearly completely covered with vegetation.  Below Ramensk’s sedge lies an open mudflat zone of alkaligrass (Puccinellia spp.), typically Hulten’s and Nootka alkaligrass (P. hultenii and nutkaensis).  

In the one plot measured, tall spikegrass (Poa eminens), pacific silverweed (Argentina egedii) and Nootka alkaligrass were present.  

The water table is at or near the surface depending on the tidal stage, which affects this type more often than the Lyngbye’s sedge type, topographically above it.  On the Susitna Flats, Ramensk's sedge occurs most frequently in Vince and Snow's (1984) 'Outer sedge marsh Zone 3', which floods a minimum of 0-5 times per summer (average = 3). 

At the one site we measured, near the mouth of the Kasilof River, the organic mat is 150 centimeters thick.  Considerable organic material is incorporated when the tide brings in silt, burying the bases of the sedges (or in winter, the entire senesced plant).  Subsidence and burial of supra-tidal vegetation following the 1964 earthquake might also explain the high organic content of the soil.  Less organic material might be more typical (c.f. Vince and Snow, 1984).  pH was moderately alkaline (8.3).  This plot is a jurisdictional wetland.

Table 1. Summary of plant cover.

      Wetland Indicator Status
  % Cover   Alaska National
Carex ramenskii   75.0 OBL OBL
Argentina egedii   10.0 np
Poa eminens   4.0 FAC FAC
Puccinellia  3.0 OBL OBL
Dendranthema arcticum  0.5 FACW FACW
Stellaria humifusa 0.5 OBL OBL
Triglochin maritimum 0.5 OBL OBL
Open water 0.5
Bare soil 10.0      
np- not present on the wetland indicator status list


 Introduction and Key to Plant Communities  

Introduction and Key to Ecosystems

    Kenai Hydric Soils    Map Unit Summary    Methods    Glossary

Contact: Mike Gracz
Kenai Watershed Forum 
PO Box 15301
Fritz Creek, AK  99603
The Alaska Natural Heritage Program
Environment and Natural Resource Institute
University of Alaska, Anchorage
707 A Street, Suite 101
Anchorage, Alaska  99501

04 May 2007 09:39