Hardiness: USDA Zone 8a: to -12.2 °C (10 °F) USDA Zone 8b: to -9.4 °C (15 °F) USDA Zone 9a: to -6.6 °C (20 °F) USDA Zone 9b: to -3.8 °C (25 °F) USDA Zone 10a: to -1.1 °C (30 °F) USDA Zone 10b: to 1.7 °C (35 °F) USDA Zone 11: above 4.5 °C (40 °F)
Sun Exposure: Sun to Partial Shade
Danger: All parts of plant are poisonous if ingested
Bloom Color: Inconspicuous/none
Bloom Time: Blooms all year Blooms repeatedly
Foliage: Grown for foliage
Other details: Very high moisture needs; suitable for bogs and water gardens
Soil pH requirements: 5.6 to 6.0 (acidic) 6.1 to 6.5 (mildly acidic)
Patent Information: Non-patented
Propagation Methods: By dividing rhizomes, tubers, corms or bulbs (including offsets) From seed; direct sow after last frost
Seed Collecting: Allow seedheads to dry on plants; remove and collect seeds
Bought some of this plant from a fellow ponder who lives nearby last year and planted it in partial shade in very muddy soil at our pond edge. We are in Upstate SC in the Blue Ridge Foothills in zone 7. Can't wait to see it come back this year. He says his return every year but does better with partial shade in our hot, often dry summers than it does in full sun.
On Oct 8, 2012, Suzanne_Jacobs from Pretoria South Africa wrote:
I can't believe this funny-looking thing really needs a lot of water. Mine came out of nowhere (probably from bird droppings) - it grows in a little neglected corner of my garden, it hardly gets any water at all, and it's doing fine.
On May 1, 2012, h9kr4jg8ir5 from Spring, TX wrote:
Last year, I filled in my Houston swimming pool with heavy clay dirt, resulting a mushy bog garden with a pond-like area on one half where standing water usually collects. I let weeds grow in it for a year then took inventory this spring of what survived. One tall grassy weed (which I finally identified as Umbrella Grass) absolutely dominated the wetter half, growing in clumps right out of the water, often reaching 4' high. Virtually nothing else could compete with it. In the drier area, it made a presence as well. I ripped out all the other weeds and I'm on my way to having a huge garden of nothing but Umbrella Grass. I had never seen it before. I suppose the seeds were in the soil when it arrived in the trucks. Or maybe the seeds came on the wind. It looks tropical to me. I'm disappointed it's not native and maybe I'll replace it with Pickerel Rush next year, but I'm enjoying it right now.
Wasn't sure how I was going to over winter this in CT. Normally I have plants dry out in winter if they need consistently moist soil. I decided to stick it in my fish tank. The fish love it and it does really well. I just need to give it some more light since the hood won't fit on the tank with a huge plant sticking out of it.
On May 9, 2011, Aramis from British Columbia Canada wrote:
I was surprised to see this plant listed as poisonous, as my cat has been muching on mine during the winter when I brought it in. I know of other people with cats who have also said their cat ate the fronds.
I also see similar comments from dog owners.
On Jun 5, 2010, Malus2006 from Coon Rapids, MN (Zone 4a) wrote:
They can be brought inside for winter for northern climates - either in a bucket or a saucer full of water. They often browned their leaves throughout winter since it takes too much care to moisture the leaves.
On Feb 19, 2008, vossner from Richmond, TX (Zone 9a) wrote:
FEBRUARY 2008: I had been warned that this was an enthusiastic plant, so armed w/ this knowledge, I potted the plant and sank it inground. In about 2 years the plastic pot had completely disappeared and I had a clump which was 2ft wide. My mistake was to cut the bottom of my pot. It seems the roots grew underneath the pot and proceeded to expand.
It was a bear to take out this gynormous clump. It weighed at least 40 lbs. I divided the clump, potted in a double pot (one plastic pot inside another) and sank it inground. If this plant outgrows this double walled container, I'm done with it.
JANUARY 2013. I can't believe 5 yrs have gone by since I posted. Happy to report that not a single volunteer or runner appeared using this "double pot sunk inground" method. However, the pot was jam packed and it was difficult to thin out. Maybe if it's thinned out every couple of years, before the pot becomes too tight, it wouldn't be a problem at all. Today I have posted a pic of my plant, removed from it spot, before dividing. DH had to tie a chain around the plant and pull it with his truck. I took a few seconds but still, this is a two people, or 1 man and 1 truck job, if you let it go too long like I did.
On Oct 27, 2007, sunimrette from Zebulon, NC (Zone 7b) wrote:
I grew this plant in a container pond out on the deck of my 3rd story apartment. It survived two winters there in zone 7b, despite my being warned that it would not. (the container never froze solid that I know of, though it did get a healthy layer of ice) I have had to re-pot it twice, as it spreads like crazy. This spring it outgrew a new pot in only three months! Now that it is the same size as the container I was using as a pond, I have re-planted it in the ground. It is easily propagated by cutting off the tip of a stem and letting it float in the water- roots form very quickly.
On Sep 15, 2007, fineas from Corpus Christi, TX wrote:
When I saw this plant sprouting in my back yard, in a tiny space surrounding my spa, I thought "what a cute little green plant". I decided to let it grow and see how it matured and how it would add to the beauty of the area around the hot tub. It grew to a monster plant as high as the structure near it. Then it had some blossoms, very small around the upper part of the "umbrella". Then it began to drop little things maybe seeds or dust that caused tons of itching, sore irritated nose and generalized itching on my skin just sitting near the plant. This plant was magnificient, tall spreading its fronds very far and reaching to the sky, tall and a little ominous. We had snow one Christmas, so rare and unusual here in South Texas, that everyone was taking photos, my hubby included. The snow did not affect this plant, it seemed and it looked wonderous despite the ill effects it gave me.
I attempted to cut it down as the reaction of my body just could not endure it any longer. Wow, this thing had to be chopped down w/an axe! then it continues to sprout new growth and would not go away until I pulled it out by its roots, which was no small feat. I continues cleaning this area for a year till I could see no more plant coming up and planted some other flowering plants there. I also planted some jasmine and weed it to help the jasmine take root better. Imagine my surprise when I found baby umbrellas sprouting from the cracks in the patio!!!! I dont know why I was surprised, causethis plant had a very strong will to survive. It was even difficult to put these fronds in the trash, seemed like they jumped out of the trash!!! We have called this plant the Audrey II since our encounter with it.
Yes I still find babies of this enduring plant popping up in many places in my yard. I wonder how it ever came to me in the first place. Most likely by air or bird.
this is my experience with this "cute little green plant".
On Sep 29, 2005, doesilky from San Antonio, TX wrote:
My niece was getting rid of her plants, so I dug them up and planted them in a shaded area. They didn't thrive so well. I dug the roots up once again and planted them a plotted planter and water them and put a plastic tray on top of them. I really forgot about them, until one day I said oh! I need to check to see if they started growing. I am happy to say they did grow, but I am afraid to put them in the ground again. Does anyone have any suggestions? Feel free to email me at Doesilky@aol.com
On Jan 22, 2005, sharilynncammac from Buhl, ID wrote:
My mother in law gave my husband a starter size of this plant for christmas. No one knows why as he doesn't do plants. But I do. I looked it up and found this web page. I was interested in trying this outdoors but our temps often get below zero. I'll try it this spring. I was very interested in the comments about dogs enjoying the plant. I pinched off a new stem and showed it to the daschund. She ate most of it and chewed on the rest. Very interesting.
I brought back some umbrella plants from GA a couple of years ago to see if they would grow here in AR. During the winter I cover them with with plastic and mulch and they came back. One plant didn't get covered last winter and it came back also. We get down in the low teens and sometimes below zero here during the winter and have a lot of ice and snow here. They are about 4 ft. tall so far this summer.
On Jul 24, 2004, desertboot from Bangalore India (Zone 10a) wrote:
We once had large clumps of them, in earth, all over the garden. The term "invasive" seems appropriate. BTW, I wonder if anyone else has found their canine family members demolishing tender new shoots with great gusto (and suffering no ill-effects thereafter, considering the lightly serrated edges)?
On Jun 24, 2004, punaheledp from Kailua, HI (Zone 11) wrote:
my mother called it "umbrella sedge". It always grew well in her garden, Hawaii zone 11, in relatively dry areas. Hardy and the bugs never semed to go after it. I have one that grew wild in a pot and stays "dwarf" at about 12"-15", but something eats the heads off as soon as they come up. No clue what it is...but the plant always comes back. I'll plant it in the ground and see if it fairs better, once I decide where to put it. Aloha.
9/24/04 - started to suspect it was my dog, not an insect eating the heads off new shoots, then saw desertboot's comment. Since then have caught him in the act. Doesn't seem to do him any harm, can't say the same for plant. Anybody have any idea how to discourage the munching dog??
On Oct 15, 2003, wnstarr from Puyallup, WA (Zone 5a) wrote:
Placed this plant into a fish pond, pot and all. It thrived, looking very nice in the pond with the soil level just bearly above the water line. It froze back in the winter, but has come back this summer. Interesting plant in watergarden, even here in Western Washington state. Will be looking for it to re-emerge next Spring.
On Oct 6, 2003, suncatcheracres from Old Town, FL wrote:
I first grew this plant in my front yard in St. Petersburg, Florida, zone 9b, for many years. It spread like crazy, and I gave away and/or sold many divisions of this plant over the years.
I now have a huge one growing in a regular flower bed in Northcentral Florida, zone 8b, and it is also spreading rapidly. It turns brown here at the first frost, but after cutting back the dead stems in mid-Spring it comes back up larger than ever.
We had very heavy rain all Summer that actually beat down some of the "heads," and these are now rooting where they touched the ground for several months. This was new to me about this plant. One of the reasons I love gardening so much is that you can always learn something new about something you thought you knew all about--Mother Nature has lots of surprises!
On Oct 3, 2003, nipajo from Dallas, TX (Zone 8b) wrote:
I have one growing in my fish pond. The only problem is that it has taken over the fish pond. Of course it was a small fish pond. But it looks like a plant in a vase. They bloom every year and they are beautiful. I have uprooted several and put them in the front pond. They are begining to stand up in that pond too. There is less sun but it does not seem to bother this plant, full sun or deep shade it takes off.
On Sep 21, 2003, htop from San Antonio, TX (Zone 8b) wrote:
San Antonio, Tx.
Umbrella plants have been growing in my mother's yard for at least 50 years. They have received little attention and no supplemetal water for the past year after she had at heart attack. Though they are not as robust as when they have been watered regularly, they are surviving. Those in my yard planted in containers require more water and are thriving. They die down after a hard freeze and reappear in spring. These plants provide tropical textural interest in the garden.
On Sep 21, 2003, gunner76 from Beaufort, NC wrote:
I live on the coast of North Carolina and this plant grows great, dies back in winter (survied 6 inches of snow in 2003) comes back strong. I divided it with a axe and grow it in large pots. I throw a hand full of what ever plant fertilizer is handy in the pot.
On Jul 11, 2003, cougares from San Antonio, TX (Zone 8b) wrote:
I have grown Umbrella Palm (Cyperus alternifolius) at several homes. What started as one stem and small portion of root has grown in extremely dry areas. I have included a photo of one outside an apartment which had no water other than Texas rain and the occassional washing of the patio. The new plants get only rain water as well. This plant can do well under most circumstances and is so easily propagated - why not try it?
On Jun 19, 2002, Ulrich from Manhattan Beach, CA (Zone 11) wrote:
Also wrongfully called Papyrus.
This plant has been said to grow in the following regions:
, Alexandria, Alabama Auburn, Alabama Dothan, Alabama Eight Mile, Alabama Fairhope, Alabama Mobile, Alabama Satsuma, Alabama Goodyear, Arizona Phoenix, Arizona (2 reports) Queen Creek, Arizona Tucson, Arizona Bay, Arkansas Midway, Arkansas Clayton, California Greenbrae, California Knights Landing, California Los Angeles, California Menifee, California Oakhurst, California Palm Springs, California Rialto, California San Francisco, California Sonoma, California Bartow, Florida Big Pine Key, Florida Boca Del Mar, Florida Islamorada, Florida Jan Phyl Village, Florida June Park, Florida New Smyrna Beach, Florida Niceville, Florida Old Town, Florida Parkland, Florida Pembroke Pines, Florida Ruskin, Florida Spring Hill, Florida Suncoast Estates, Florida Tallahassee, Florida Tavernier, Florida Yulee, Florida Cordele, Georgia Flemington, Georgia Jonesboro, Georgia Patterson, Georgia Kailua, Hawaii Kapaa, Hawaii Union, Kentucky Baton Rouge, Louisiana Denham Springs, Louisiana Gonzales, Louisiana New Orleans, Louisiana Zachary, Louisiana Olney, Maryland East Longmeadow, Massachusetts Minneapolis, Minnesota Madison, Mississippi Natchez, Mississippi Summit, Mississippi Hoberg, Missouri Bridgewater, New Jersey , New York Beaufort, North Carolina Elizabeth City, North Carolina Raleigh, North Carolina Ruth, North Carolina Zebulon, North Carolina Canton, Ohio Cleveland, Ohio Fruit Hill, Ohio Huber Heights, Ohio North Zanesville, Ohio Cottage Grove, Oregon Portland, Oregon Royersford, Pennsylvania Vieques, Puerto Rico Beaufort, South Carolina Bluffton, South Carolina Bucksport, South Carolina Centerville, South Carolina Conway, South Carolina East Sumter, South Carolina Hilton Head Island, South Carolina Inman, South Carolina Isle Of Palms, South Carolina Lexington, South Carolina Moncks Corner, South Carolina Saint Helena Island, South Carolina Lake City, Tennessee Abilene, Texas Alice, Texas Aransas Pass, Texas Austin, Texas (2 reports) Cameron Park, Texas Canyon Lake, Texas Coppell, Texas Corpus Christi, Texas Dallas, Texas Fort Worth, Texas Fulshear, Texas Garland, Texas Hill Country Village, Texas Houston, Texas Humble, Texas Impact, Texas Jacksonville, Texas Keller, Texas Lasana, Texas Leon Valley, Texas Lubbock, Texas Midland, Texas New Braunfels, Texas Odessa, Texas Pecan Grove, Texas Plano, Texas Rusk, Texas San Antonio, Texas Santa Fe, Texas Shenandoah, Texas Spring Branch, Texas Sunset Valley, Texas Edgewood, Washington Everett, Washington