selected vouchers: WTU
Notes: FNA23: "Carex brunnescens is variable across its wide distribution; it deserves a monographic treatment. Many taxa have been described. Most variation is presumably of ecophenotypic nature; when growing in shady habitats the species is slender and weak and the scales are not or but little colored; in more exposed sites it is stiffer, and the scales become strongly brownish tinged. Only two subspecies are recognized here. Subspecies alaskana and subsp. pacifica (see A. Kalela 1965) seem to grade to the typical subsp. brunnescens. A short-leaved plant with short and red tinged perigynia from western United States (Colorado, Montana, Utah, Wyoming) may represent a southern subspecies and should be studied in greater detail.