Annuals 8–15 cm tall, roots fasciculate, thin. Leaves basal and cauline, subcanaliculate to almost flat, less than 1.5 mm wide in our material, apex acute, sheath margin membranous, gradually narrowing, auricles absent. Basal bract leaf-like, shorter than inflorescence. Inflorescence terminal, lax; branches ± straight, often erecto-patent to almost patent; flowers solitary or in 2–3-flowered clusters, each supported by a pair of ovate translucent whitish-yellowish bracteoles 1.1–1.4 mm long. Tepals subequal, narrowly lanceolate, acute to acuminate, with broad, almost transparent, scarious to membranous margins, middle part adaxially dark castaneous-brown to blackish brown, abaxially initially greenish, later pale stramineous or silvery-stramineous, outer middle stripe narrower than the inner and therefore distinctly blackish bordered, outer tepals 3–4 mm long, ca. 1 mm wide, middle stripe ca. 0.4 mm wide adaxially, inner tepals 2.5–3.7 mm long. Stamens 6, anthers usually 1.5–2.0 mm long, 3–5 × as long as 0.4–0.55 mm long filaments; style (including young capsule mucro) usually 0.5–0.8 mm long, stigmas usually erecto-patent, 0.8–1.3 mm long. Capsule ovoid, indistinctly trigonous above, trilocular, castaneous-brown, subequalling or shorter than perianth, 2.3–3.0 mm long, abruptly narrowed in a mucro 0.2–0.3 mm long. Seeds pale brownish, broadly ovoid, 0.35–0.40 mm long, 0.28–0.32 mm wide, smooth (without visible striation), glossy.
[Egypt, Sinai Peninsula, the Gebel Sinai and Jabal Kathrina region] Ad fontes in rupestribus prope Nafeh in Arab. petr., 16. Mai, leg. W. Schimper [Unio itin. 1835, no 113, as Juncus foliosus ] (PRC).
Note 1: The other specimens seen from those distributed under no. 113 mostly belong to other taxa ( Juncus hybridus , Juncus bufonius agg., probably also Juncus foliosus ).
Note 2: The locality ‘Nafeh’ was not safely identified. W. Schimper, from late March, 1835, collected plants in the region around the monastery of St. Catharina at the foot of Mt Sinai [Dayr al Qiddisah Katrina]. The Juncus collection was made on 16 May; on May 10, he collected a Reseda (no 103) ‘ad radices montis Sinai’ while on May 19 he gathered another Reseda (no. 241) ‘in praeruptis St. Catharinae’, always in the same territory. Nafeh is therefore expected to be in that region, too.
found in a non-saline, oligotrophic seepage site.
In addition to the old gathering from the Sinai Peninsula, Egypt, Juncus maroccanus is known from a single macrolocality in the Ksar el Kebir region, N Morocco. The locality is a shallow flat valley formed by a brook, with a broad sandy zone near the road. There are numerous shallow sand-pits surrounded by fine gravel on the moderate slope, which have temporarily wet sides due to seepage. The place is very rich in annual rushes confined to non-saline habitats: Juncus capitatus, J. tingitanus, J. minutulus. Another common species is Illecebrum verticillatum . Typically, plants of subsaline sites are absent from the locality (e.g. Juncus foliosus, Juncus hybridus ).