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Scirpus Americanus- Three Square Rush

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Native to mainly the western section of North America, Three Square Rush has green foliage with a stout, porous texture. It produces single, green stems in small groups that are sharply triangular. Its long, firm, strongly folded are occasionally fla

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Scirpus Americanus- Three Square Rush


Native to mainly the western section of North America, Three Square Rush has green foliage with a stout, porous texture. It produces single, green stems in small groups that are sharply triangular. Its long, firm, strongly folded are occasionally flat. It produces dark-brown, seed-like. pointy-tipped fruits Small spikelets gather near the top of the stalk on one side. It is part of the sedge family, and its genus is a bulrush.
Considered to be a perennial, it grows in small groups with an erect shape. It has a moderate growth rate and reaches its maximum height of about seven feet to 10 feet before its maturity at 20 years. Not considered to be a low growing grass, it has a long lifespan unless consumed by wildlife first. It blooms in the spring and summer, producing yellow or brown blooms. Propagation does not occur with cuttings, sod, tubers, bulbs, containers or bare root. It reproduces using its seeds and spreads by rhizomes. It produces weak seedlings. Its active growth period takes place in the spring and experiences a slow regrowth rate after harvest.


Present throughout the western part of Canada, Alaska, the western and southern part of the United States and a few, isolated eastern states, this plant is a Hydrophyte that is nearly always a wetland plant. It commonly grows at low elevations in wet woods, sloughs, roadside ditches, brackish and freshwater marshes, around ponds and lakes and along streams. It rises in shallow water one to two and a half feet deep on sandy flats and beach pools.
This plant grows in water or moist soil where the minimum yearly water levels are not less than four to five inches above the soil surface. It survives fires quite well, as the portion of the plant underwater quickly regenerates. The Three Square Rush is useful when restoring brackish and saltwater marshes and stands.


This is not a toxic plant, and its seeds are rich in protein. Upon grinding the seeds, mix them with water to produce a mush for eating. Add ground up seeds to flour for cakes and bread. Three Square Rush leaves are ideal for weaving, delivering baskets, hats, and other useful items. Muskrat and snow geese use this plant for food, and wintering ducks eat its seeds. It also provides cover for small mammals and birds.