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A picture of a Papyrus


Cyperus papyrus

Also known as

The Bulrush of The Bible, Nile Grass, Paper Reed, Papirus, Papierriet (Afr.), Egyptian paper plant, Paper plant

Photo by Simonesmal (All rights reserved)

Full Sun
Easy care
Frequent watering


USDA zone


Minimum temperature

Expected size








2 years to reach maturity


  • spring
  • summer
  • autumn
  • winter

This plant has no fragrance

More images of Papyrus

A photo of Papyrus
A photo of Papyrus
A photo of Papyrus
A photo of Papyrus
A photo of Papyrus

Papyrus Overview

A wetland clump-forming plant with tall bare stems and a mop-like crown or head of thread-like leaves or spikelets. It can grow up to 5m tall and heavy heads bed downwards under their own weight. They occur naturally in swamps and wetlands throughout Africa and some Mediterranean countries. It is used as building material and the rhizomes can be eaten raw or cooked. A wetland plant for gardens, adding height to the landscape. This is a common feature plant. ZA Distribution: KwaZulu-Natal, Limpopo, Mpumalanga.

Common problems with Papyrus

Problem free

    Papyrus Companion Plants

    Water with other wetland plants like arum lilies.

    A photo of Arum Lilies

    Arum Lilies

    Zantedeschia spp.

    How to harvest Papyrus

    The roots are harvested for consumption by humans. Divisions and new shoots can be removed in spring time for propagation purposes.

    How to propagate Papyrus


    Divide the rhizomes and replant.


    Divide the thick rhizomes with stems cut back and replant in wet soil.


    Sow seed in Spring.

    Special features of Papyrus

    Attracts birds

    Birds use the tuffs as material for nest building.

    Pot plant

    Planting it in a pot in a pond will help to contain it to one area.

    Wet sites

    Well suited to grow in wetlands.

    Attractive leaves

    The leaves make interesting soft balls at the end of long stems.

    Other uses of Papyrus


    Makes a good feature plant near water.

    Raw material

    In Ancient Egypt, papyrus was used for various of purposes such as baskets, sandals, blankets, medicine, incense, and boats. The woody root was used to make bowls and utensils, and was burned for fuel.


    The roots are edible raw or cooked.

    Environmental value

    It has environmental value. With the quantities it grows in and having its roots in the water, it plays an important role in the cleaning of the environment and regulation of the ecosystem.

    Other uses


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