wool rush

Wool rush or wood grass. Photo: Robert H. Mohlenbrock, hosted by the USDA-NRCS PLANTS Database / USDA SCS. 1989. Midwest wetland flora: Field office illustrated guide to plant species. Midwest National Technical Center, Lincoln.

Updated: March 6, 2023
wool grass

About wool rush or wool grass

Scirpus cyperinus
Sedge Family

Maryland Distribution: Fresh tidal and non-tidal marshes, swamp edges, wet meadows, and ditches, throughout Maryland.

Height: Foliage 2.5 to 3 ft, flowering stems to 5 feet.
Blooms: In summer young flowering heads are initially white-green, maturing to a wooly cinnamon-brown mass as seeds ripen.
Sun: Full sun to light shade.
Soil: Moist to wet soils of any texture, acidic to neutral.

Garden Use & Maintenance: Use as you would any specimen grass to provide textural contrast and movement in the garden. Ideal for rain gardens. Attractive basal foliage forms dense clumps 2-3 ft in diameter, providing great texture for the summer garden. Seed heads remain attractive well into winter, and are excellent in dried arrangements.  

Wildlife: Host plant for a variety of insects including butterflies such as the Dion Skipper and the Eyed Brown.

wool grass in a garden

Wood grass (on the left) in a garden

Additional resource

Publications for Gardeners | Maryland Native Plant Society

Still have a question? Contact us at Ask Extension.