Papyrus

Cyperus papyrus
Cyperaceae
detail view of papyrus plant
detail view of papyrus plant
Can papyrus grow tall where there is no marsh? Can reeds thrive without water? While still growing and uncut, they wither more quickly than grass. Such is the destiny of all who forget God; so perishes the hope of the godless.
Job 8:11-12 NIV
detail view of papyrus plant
Never take your word of truth from my mouth, for I have put my hope in your laws. I will always obey your law, for ever and ever. I will walk about in freedom, for I have sought out your precepts.
Psalm 119:43-45 NIV

Cultural Information

TypePerennial
Height5 to 10 feet
Soilmoist to wet
Exposurefull sun to part shade
Leavesnarrow bright green spindles form a mop-head style puff atop tall, tubular stalks
Flowerssmall, splayed, brownish tufts along leaf spindles

Planting Tips

  • Zones 8 and colder, papyrus will likely grow as an annual
  • sensitive to freezing temperatures yet surprisingly hardy to many garden conditions
  • plant in the wettest part of your yard - loves wet feet or pondside planting
  • papyrus thrives in ponds or containers with standing water, no need for drainage holes
  • combat mosquitoes in standing water with Bti dunks

Garden to Table

  • papyrus stalks make dramatic, architectural floral arrangements
  • add stems to large glass bowls secured in submerged river rocks
  • bring potted papyrus to tables where height accent is needed

Additional Resources

See Blog Posts on Papyrus
Papyrus without water is like hope without God — dead (Job 8:11 – 12). Papyrus plants require plenty of water to grow, drawing the analogy that hope in God and his Word is elemental (Psalm 119:43,49). From any other source hope might sprout for a short period but will eventually wither or disappoint.
-from the NIV God's Word for Gardeners Bible
detail view of papyrus plant
Never take your word of truth from my mouth, for I have put my hope in your laws. I will always obey your law, for ever and ever. I will walk about in freedom, for I have sought out your precepts.
Psalm 119:43-45 NIV

Photo Credits

© 2014 Shelley S. Cramm Papyrus flowers close-up from the Rodef Shalom Biblical Garden in Pittsburgh, PA
© 2011 Riverrail | Dreamstime.com - Papyrus growing in a garden waterscape
©2014 Jacqui at Flickr Creative Commons Hand made papyrus paper
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