views updated

Cyperaceae A family of monocotyledonous (see MONOCOTYLEDON) herbs of grass-like habit that have inconspicuous, wind-pollinated flowers but solid, often trigonous stems and 3-ranked leaves. They occur mostly in wet places or on poor soils. The family contains some garden plants but they are of little economic importance. There are about 115 genera, with 3600 species.