Down by the river last weekend I came across clumps of these tall and droopy sedges growing on the banks. They can grow up to a height of 1.5m ( 5ft) and are evergreen. The male flowers spikelets grow up to 10cm (4in) long from the tip of the plant, whilst the female spikelets which are pendulous and look similar to catkins grow up to 16cm (6in) long. It flowers May to June.
Sometimes grown in gardens because of its distinctive and attractive appearance, it is a native perennial which is usually found in damp deciduous woodland, or near shaded streams or rivers. It is commoner in the south of England.