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Blossoming rush (Scheuchzeria palustris)

Blossoming rush ( Scheuchzeria palustris )

Class : Bedecktsamer (Magnoliopsida)
Order : Frog-spoon-like (Alismatales)
Family : Rush plants
Genre : Scheuchzeria
Type : Rush
Scientific name of the  family
Scientific name of the  genus
Scientific name of the  species
Scheuchzeria palustris

The flowering rush ( Scheuchzeria palustris ), which is also called bubble rush after the shape of the fruit and in Austria bubble rush , is the only species in the monotypical genus Scheuchzeria , which in turn is the only genus of the family of flowering rush plants (Scheuchzeriaceae), also called bladder rush plants . Nothing is known about its use by humans.

The German species name Blumenbinse is occasionally used as a common name for the swan flower ( Butomus umbellatus ).


Illustration of the flowering rush ( Scheuchzeria palustris )

Habit and leaves

The rush grows as a slender, hibernating green, perennial, herbaceous plant that reaches heights of 10 to 30 centimeters. This marsh plant forms creeping rhizomes . The upright, unbranched stem runs zigzag.

The leaves are basal and alternate , two, but almost three lines on the stem. The rush-like leaves are divided into leaf sheath and leaf blade. In the lower area, the stem is also surrounded by dead leaf sheaths . The open, 1.5 to 10 cm long leaf sheaths have 2 to 12 mm long, membranous auricles (ligules). The upright, simple leaf blades are parallel-veined, linear, semicircular, rutty, 2 to 41 cm long and 1 to 3 mm wide. The stomata are tetracycline. There are small pores at the tip of the leaf blade. There are many hair-like scales in the leaf axils.

Inflorescences and flowers

In terminal, 3 to 10 cm long, racemose inflorescences three to twelve flowers and long, foliage -like bracts stand together. The inflorescence axis elongates after fertilization.

The star-shaped flowers are hermaphroditic and threefold. There are two circles, each with three white to yellow-green, free, uniformly shaped bloom cladding sheets; they are durable, membranous and 2 to 3 mm long. There are two circles with three free stamens each. The three-cell pollen grains have no aperture. The three or rarely six upper carpels are only fused at their base. Each carpel has marginally one to three anatropic ovules at its base . The usually three, rarely up to six pistils are 6 to 7 mm long and there is no stylus ; the papillary scars are seated. Pollination takes place by the wind ( anemophilia ).

Rushes of flowers with ripe (left) and deciduous (right) follicles
Follicles of the rush

Fruits and seeds

One to four follicles are found in a collective fruit. Their light green to brown, 4 to 10 mm long, leathery, obliquely egg-shaped and strongly inflated follicles have a 0.5 to 1 mm long beak. Each follicle contains one or two, rarely three seeds.

The starch-rich seeds are egg-shaped, 4 to 5 mm long. The smooth and hard seed coat (testa) is brown to black in color.


The chromosomes are 0.8 to 2 µm long. The number of chromosomes is 2n = 22.


The scheuchzeria is a rhizome - Geophyt with underground runners.

The pollination of flowers is carried by the wind ( anemophily ). Flowering time is from May to June.

3 (-6) vesicular, 2-seeded follicles develop per flower . The starch-rich seeds contain no endosperm , but a green, straight embryo , the cotyledon (cotyledon) is not photosynthetically active. The seed coat is interspersed with large intercellular spaces, which enables the seeds to spread by swimming.


A typical ingredient is triglochinin , which belongs to the cyanogenic glycosides . There are calcium oxalate crystals present.


The flowering rush has a wide, circumpolar distribution area from the polar to the temperate climatic zones (south temperate to boreal) of the northern hemisphere , i.e. a Holarctic distribution. The distribution is sub-oceanic to sub-continental. The distribution centers of the species are concentrated in northeastern Europe and North America. In addition, some isolated occurrences in Central Europe and East Asia should be mentioned.

This species is restricted to acidic intermediate bogs and raised bogs ; it is considered a character species of the association Caricetum limosae (mud sedge society). The peat moss Schlammseggenried is a plant community which forms vibrating turf in oligotrophic waters that cannot be walked on . Above all, White Schnabelried ( Rhynchospora alba ), the mud sedge ( Carex limosa ) and the rare thread-rooted sedge ( Carex chordorrhiza ) together with the bladder rush make up this society.

This species is not endangered worldwide. Due to the destruction of their habitats (degradation, cultivation and drainage of bog sites), the rush is rarely found in Central Europe. It is classified as "highly endangered" on the German Red List . Only in the foothills of the Alps and in parts of north-east Germany is this species to be found more steadily, otherwise only isolated occurrences exist. In Lower Saxony the species is now only very scattered. In 2011 it could still be detected in six counties. Due to the wealth of moorland, it used to be common in the Emsland / Bentheim area, but has now become rare there too.

In the Allgäu Alps, it rises in Vorarlberg near Unterkrumbach near the Hochtannberg Pass up to 1570 m above sea level.


The first publication of the genus name Scheuchzeria palustris or Scheuchzeria was in 1753 by Carl von Linné in Species Plantarum . The surname Scheuchzeriaceae was published in 1830 by Friedrich Karl Ludwig Rudolphi in Systema orbis vegetabilium , 28. Synonyms for Scheuchzeria palustris are Papillaria palustris (L.) Dulac , Scheuchzeria americana (Fernald) GNJones , Scheuchzeria palustris subsp. americana (Fernald) Hultén , Scheuchzeria palustris var. americana Fernald . The scientific generic name Scheuchzeria honors the Swiss biologist Johann Jakob Scheuchzer (1672–1733) and his brother Johannes Scheuchzer (1684–1738).

The Scheuchzeriaceae family belongs to the order of the Alismatales within the monocot plants . Scheuchzeria was sometimes incorporated into the Juncaginaceae . In most scientific publications since 1940, the Scheuchzeriaceae represent a family of their own.

The North American specimens differ somewhat in the shape of their fruits and so they were named as the variety Scheuchzeria palustris var. Americana Fernald or as the subspecies Scheuchzeria palustris subsp. americana (Fernald) Hultén or Art Scheuchzeria americana (Fernald) GNJones separated from some authors. Flora of North America (2010) only recognizes the species, not varieties or subspecies.


  • Tobias Böckermann: The bladder rush (Scheuchzeria palustris) - a rare plant of the Emsland moors, in: Study Society for Emsland Regional History (Hrsg.): Emsländische Geschichte 19, Haselünne 2012, pp. 12-21.
  • Jürgen Feder: The flower rush (Scheuchzeria palustris L.) in Lower Saxony and Bremen. In: Floristic notes from the Lüneburg Heath. Volume 20, 2012.
  • Youhao Guo, Robert R. Haynes, C. Barre Hellquist: Scheuchzeriaceae. In: Wu Zheng-yi, Peter H. Raven, Deyuan Hong (Eds.): Flora of China . Volume 23: Acoraceae through Cyperaceae . Science Press / Missouri Botanical Garden Press, Beijing / St. Louis 2010, ISBN 978-1-930723-99-3 , pp. 103 (English, online ). (Sections Description, Systematics and Distribution)
  • Mark A. Nienaber: Scheuchzeriaceae. In: Flora of North America Editorial Committee (Ed.): Flora of North America North of Mexico . Volume 3: Magnoliophyta: Magnoliidae and Hamamelidae . Oxford University Press, New York / Oxford a. a. 1997, ISBN 0-19-511246-6 , pp. 41–42 (English, family, genus and species online ). (Section description and systematics)

Individual evidence

  1. ^ Manfred A. Fischer, Karl Oswald, Wolfgang Adler: Excursion flora for Austria, Liechtenstein and South Tyrol . 3rd, improved edition. Province of Upper Austria, Biology Center of the Upper Austrian State Museums, Linz 2008, ISBN 978-3-85474-187-9 , p. 1023 .
  2. a b Erich Oberdorfer : Plant-sociological excursion flora for Germany and neighboring areas . With the collaboration of Angelika Schwabe and Theo Müller. 8th, heavily revised and expanded edition. Eugen Ulmer, Stuttgart (Hohenheim) 2001, ISBN 3-8001-3131-5 , pp.  109 .
  3. a b c Ruprecht Düll , Herfried Kutzelnigg : Pocket dictionary of plants in Germany and neighboring countries. The most common Central European species in portrait . 7th, corrected and enlarged edition. Quelle & Meyer, Wiebelsheim 2011, ISBN 978-3-494-01424-1 , p. 796 .
  4. Rafaël Govaerts (Ed.): Scheuchzeria. In: World Checklist of Selected Plant Families (WCSP) - The Board of Trustees of the Royal Botanic Gardens, Kew . Retrieved June 20, 2018.
  5. See Jürgen Feder: The flower rush (Scheuchzeria palustris L.) in Lower Saxony and Bremen. In: Floristic notes from the Lüneburg Heath. Volume 20, 2012, pp. 35-39.
  6. Erhard Dörr, Wolfgang Lippert : Flora of the Allgäu and its surroundings. Volume 1, IHW, Eching 2001, ISBN 3-930167-50-6 , p. 138.
  7. Carl von Linné: Species Plantarum. Volume 1, Lars Salvius, Stockholm 1753, p. 338 ( digitized versionhttp: //vorlage_digitalisat.test/ IA% 3D ~ MDZ% 3D% 0A ~ SZ% 3D ~ double-sided% 3D ~ LT% 3D ~ PUR% 3D ).
  8. Scheuchzeriaceae at Missouri Botanical Garden, St. Louis
  9. Helmut Genaust: Etymological dictionary of botanical plant names. 2nd, improved edition. Birkhäuser, Basel / Boston / Berlin 1983, ISBN 3-7643-1399-4 .

Web links

Commons : Rush of flowers  - album with pictures, videos and audio files