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Gardening sheet eleocharis macrostachya

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Gardening information for Eleocharis macrostachya

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Gardening sheet eleocharis macrostachya

  1. 1. Common Spike Rush – Eleocharis macrostachya (palustris) (ee-lee-OH-kuh-ris macro-STACK-ee-uh Family: Cyperaceae (Sedge Family) Native to: Much of North America; in marshes, roadside ditches, and along stream banks, lakeshores, river bottoms, and in wet meadows and flood areas. Growth characteristics: tufted perennial sedge mature height: 1-2 ft. mature width: 1-2 ft. Slender stems singular or in small clusters. Will continue to grow if the water rises slowly forming a dense clump (rhizomatous). Bright green foliage that looks like a minature rush, or a funny-looking lawn grass. Attractive even when dry. The stems are hollow when the plant is in water (to transport air to roots) and solid when the ground is dry. Blooms/fruits: Blooms June-Sept. Flowering stalk rises above the foliage. Flowering head looks somewhat like a small pinecone at the tip of the flowering stalk. Attractive. Uses in the garden: Fast-growing and hardy. Dense roots good for bank stabilization (streams and ponds). Attractive addition to constructed wetland, vernal swales or along the edges of an artificial ponds or water gardens. Roots fix nitrogen. Plant is allelopathic (toxic) to some other plants. Sensible substitute for: Non-native sedges and rushes used around ponds/pools. Attracts: Excellent bird habitat: provides cover and seeds for food. Small mammals use for shelter. Requirements: Element Requirement Sun Full sun to full shade (better with some sun) Soil Any, including alkaline and sandy Water Requires seasonal flooding and can tolerate year-round flooding or summer drought Fertilizer None required Other Management: Easy to grow. Grows best with fluctuating water levels. Spreads by rhizomes. Can clip dead leaves or leave on plant – quite attractive. Propagation: from seed: easy; Seeds germinate in standing water. by divisions: easy Plant/seed sources (see list for source numbers): 2, 3, 10, 13, 16 1/9/06 © Project SOUND

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