Carex eburnea is probably most distinctive on thin soil over limestone/dolomite in upland sites of Door County, often associated with Thuja occidentalis (white cedar). If the soil is somewhat calcareous it may also be found elsewhere, including in swampy areas (again, often with Thuja occidentalis), where it will tend to occur on the higher spots. Note the very restricted distribution on the map.
The leaves are very narrow, almost wire-like, with stems in small dense clusters connected by spreading rhizomes, the close growth thereof producing a dense mat-like growth form. The flowering stems usually are conspicuously longer than the leaves. It will tolerate a wide range of light conditions if the other criteria are conducive, e.g. full sun if moisture is adequate, and if conditons are such that rank growth of more competitive species does not occur.