Scirpus acutus (Schoenoplectus acutus var. occidentalis)

hardstem bulrush

Habit: hardstem bulrush despite its common name is an erect giant species of sedge with long cylindrical to angular gray green stems. Three to 4 slender leaves formed near the base of the plant are commonly sheathed around the stem. It spreads into large colonies by rhizomes. The panicle (seed head) is borne from the side of the stem near the tip and is made up of very small pale brownish florets grouped into 50 or more small spikelets, blooming between June and August.

Ecology: found near lakes, streams, marshes and wetlands, usually near or in standing water, with a range cutting across Western North America from British Columbia to Texas at low to mid elevations generally below 7500 ft (2286 m).

Growing Conditions: full sun, in standing water to wet soil.

Scirpus acutus is used by many species of birds, amphibians, reptiles, and mammals for food, and shelter. These native plants are especially good for streambank stabilization or restoring disturbed or degraded areas, for erosion and slope control.


5-8 ft. (1.5-2.5 m)
USDA Zones:

Native Habitat

See All Native Plants