Horsetail Rush ( Equisetaceae )

This horsetail rush was growing near the water runoff ditch that runs under the fence. I just put it in the ground a week or so ago. Eventually the rush will get about 3′ tall and the stems will be about 1/3″ thick. I’ve seen them growing near buildings where the landscapers trim the tops level and it looks really cool.

After a drought or two I potted it up and it’s now sitting out front in full afternoon sun.

No flowers, no seeds and the leaves are tiny and what form the ridges along the stems.

Rush can handle full sun to part shade.

Ground should be wet, do not let rush dry out. It wants to grow in wet soil – not in a pond or underwater. It will turn yellow and die under those conditions.

Rush is slow to get settled and slow to grow during droughts. Once settled and given lots of water it does just fine.

Much of it died back in the hard freezes but it re-appeared late winter.

Early settlers used the stems for scouring pots and pans. Non-toxic to humans it has been known to occasionally poison live stock.

Can be invasive if conditions are right.

This is one of the older plant species still with us. Rush first appeared in the Carboniferous time about 345 million years ago.

Surprising drought and 100’F for 3 months heat survivor.

2 thoughts on “Horsetail Rush ( Equisetaceae )

  1. Oh, is that what that is? I love the modern look of that when it’s cut off like that. I wish it liked really REALLY dry dirt. I’ve got a perfect spot where I need something tall and vertical and very narrow.

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