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Scirpus cyperinus

woolgrass add to wishlist

Plant types and subtypes: Grasses, Sedges, Wetland Grasses

Light Requirements: sun, part-sun

Water Use: high

Soil Moisture: wet

Soil Description: acid, neutral, loam, clay, sand

Height: 4'-5'

Bloom Time: June, July, August, September

Bloom Color: yellow, green, brown

Leaf Color: green

Hardiness Zone: 3, 4, 5, 6, 7, 8, 9

Additional Tags: attracts birds, bog plant, clumping, dried flowers, emergent, ornamental foliage, pond margin plant, stream margin plant, swamp plant, water garden plant, wetland plant

Scirpus cyperinus (woolgrass)
  • Scirpus cyperinus (woolgrass)
  • Scirpus cyperinus (woolgrass)
  • Scirpus cyperinus (woolgrass)
  • Scirpus cyperinus (woolgrass)

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Description

Scirpus cyperinus

Also known as:

woolgrass

,

wool grass

,

cotton grass bulrush

,

common wool-grass

,

marsh bulrush

,

teddybear paws

Scientific Synonyms:

Scirpus cyperinus var. condensatus, Scirpus cyperinus var. eriophorum, Scirpus cyperinus var. laxus, Scirpus cyperinus var. pelius, Scirpus cyperinus var. rubricosus, Scirpus eriophorum, Scirpus rubricosus

Description

Scirpus cyperinus is an ecologically valuable Sedge, albeit not one with the most attractive foliage of the family. With an open and rather unkempt habit, it really stands out aesthetically late summer when the bristly achenes (a type of seed) mature into large wooly clusters to which it owes its common name. The leaves are concentrated on the lower half of the culms, are spreading, and often bent. Plant height is 4' or less (6' or more when in bloom). When grown in water, or at water's edge, it will tend to form tussocks: dense clumps where the root mass pushes the plant above the water line. When grown in drier areas, it will adopt more of a spreading habit via rhizomes, forming open colonies.

Cultivation

Woolgrass is a freshwater emergent aquatic species that can withstand periods of inundation in up to 12" of water. It is however quite adaptable to average, moist conditions and will even tolerate an occasional dry spell. It thrives in full sun, yet can adapt to a moderate amount of shade. This versatility makes it an ideal plant for shoreline restoration and erosion control, as well as for bioswales and even rain gardens. Zones 3-9

Additional Notes

The genus common name (bulrush) and many of the common names for the species are misnomers; it is neither a grass or a rush, but a member of the Sedge family (Cyperaceae).

Native Range & Classification

Recorded County Distribution: USDA data

Native Range:
AL, AR, CA, CT, DC, DE, FL, GA, IA, ID, IL, IN, KY, LA, MA, MD, ME, MI, MN, MO, MS, MT, NC, NH, NJ, NY, OH, OK, OR, PA, RI, SC, SD, TN, TX, VA, VT, WA, WI, WV, WY

Classification

Kingdom Plantae Plants
Subkingdom Tracheobionta Vascular plants
Superdivision Spermatophyta Seed plants
Division Magnoliophyta Flowering plants
Class Liliopsida Monocotyledons
Subclass Commelinidae
Order Cyperales
Family Cyperaceae Sedge family
Genus Scirpus bulrush
Species Scirpus cyperinus woolgrass