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Equisetum hyemale

Pronunciation: Ek-wis-see-tum hy-eh-may-lee
Family: Equisetaceae (horsetail family
Common Name: Horsetail, scouring rush, e. Prealtum (syn. )
Plant Type:
  • perennial
Height to: 3'
USDA Hardiness Zones:
  • -30 to -40ºF ZONE 3
  • -20 to -30ºF ZONE 4
  • -10 to -20ºF ZONE 5
  • 0 to -10ºF ZONE 6
  • 10 to 0ºF ZONE 7
  • 20 to 10ºF ZONE 8
  • 30 to 20ºF ZONE 9
  • 40 to 30ºF ZONE 10
  • 50 to 40ºF ZONE 11
Sun Exposure:
  • full sun
Bloom Description: Like other pteridophytes (ferns and their relatives), scouring rush does not produce flowers or seeds. Instead it develops a brown, cone-shaped, spore-producing strobilus at the tip of fertile stems, which are shorter than the infertile stems. The spores themselves are microscopic
Soil Type: Scouring rush can tolerate prolonged wet conditions, but should not be totally submerged nor allowed to dry out.
Pests and Diseases: Root rot or blight
Propagation: Scouring rush spreads by shallow rhizomes (underground stems) and is easily propagated by dividing the clumps and immediately replanting the rooted individual plants.
Native to: Common scouring rush occurs in wet places, including pond margins, swamps, floodplains and ditches, in eurasia and north america. It sometimes forms dense stands along bogs or marshes in northern us and europe.
Notes for Identification: Scouring rush is often grown in japanese-style gardens, at the edge of ponds and in the margins of ornamental water gardens. It can be invasive if conditions are favorable, so, unless you want a large, spreading stand of it, it is advisable to maintain scouring rush in containers sunk in the ground with the lip just barely above ground level. However, a dense stand of scouring rush along the margin of an ornamental pool can be very attractive and will exclude weeds.  warningscouring rush contains large amounts of sharp silica crystal making it painful, if not actually life-threatening, if ingested. It has been reported to sicken cattle.  
USDA Heat Zones (days above 86ºF):
  • Less then 1 day ZONE 1
  • 1 to 7 days ZONE 2
  • 7 to 14 days ZONE 3
  • 14 to 30 days ZONE 4
  • 30 to 45 days ZONE 5
  • 45 to 60 days ZONE 6
  • 60 to 90 days ZONE 7
  • 90 to 120 days ZONE 8
  • 120 to 150 days ZONE 9
  • 150 to 180 days ZONE 10
  • 180 to 210 days ZONE 11
  • Greater then 210 ZONE 12
Additions, corrections by: Distantkin
Seed photo: 0
Located in: Perennials
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