Cyperus alternifolius, commonly known as Papyrus or Umbrella Sedge, is a small shrub native to Madagascar, Reunion Island and Mauritius. This ornamental plant grows up to 2-5 feet tall and is highly prized for its foliage providing a light, airy and billowy effect. It is most successful when grown in full sun to semi-shade and does best in bog or aquatic soils that are wet. It is tolerant to seasonal flooding and requires regular waterings to thrive.
In terms of plant care, Cyperus alternifolius is an easy-to-care-for plant that is often low-maintenance. During the summer its foliage should be given a deep watering at least once a week. In the winter, waterings can be reduced to around once a month depending on the local weather conditions. For optimal growth, fertilize every three months during the growing season with a bloom-boosting fertilizer.
When grown in colder regions, Cyperus alternifolius can do well in a pot where it can be brought indoors during the winter months. Make sure to water it regularly and move it outside during the warm months to benefit from the sunlight and give the plant the chance to spread its roots. Additionally, use a soil specifically designed for bog and aquatic plants. This helps the soil retain its moisture and prevents it from becoming waterlogged in winter.
Use this plant along the shores of lakes, ponds, and slow moving streams to create masses of hazy light green foliage. A single clump can serve as a focal point, or use in pairs to frame a scene. When used in smaller pools and fishponds, grow Papyrus in containers placed underwater.