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Who Grows Papyrus Indoors?

by Kenneth Moore (indoorgarden_er)

I'd love to have this next to my computer desk in my studio apartment!
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I want to grow Cyperus papyrus, the papyrus plant that Egyptians used to make paper, in my apartment!


I was at the New York Botanical Garden over the holidays, and I saw a beautiful clump in the conservatory. Usually when I go to a botanic garden, I photograph plants that are interesting or groupings that I find aesthetic--it's like a shopping list of plants to get in the future. So when I opened the door to a hallway with a fountain, and directly to my left was this display of healthy, eight-foot-tall papyrus, well, I was impressed and stunned!


DigTheDirt lists the plant as, of course, an outdoor plant--any sane gardener would choose to put such a plant outdoors, where it can play a striking accent in a variety of locations. If I had outdoor space for this unique plant, it might be able to survive winters here in DC, but that's a big if. So, container-grown indoor papyrus is the undeniable answer to my problem!


But, although the cultivation information I have found seems to indicate the plant can grow in some shade, I have been lied to before by the internet and plant company care tags. I have found dwarf varieties suited to growing as houseplants--but who wants a 12-inch-tall papyrus plant? No, I want five-foot-tall (or taller!) plants sitting in my living room, because I'm just that kind of eccentric.


I cannot find much information about growing these plants indoors, except for the warning "prone to spider mites." I have a good handle on the buggers, however--constant diligence has greatly decreased their presence in my dwelling. Does anyone know how well Cyperus papyrus grows indoors, or is anyone interested in getting it to test out with me and comparing notes?




LOVE that plant! It is such a cool alien looking one- just the kind I like. I have never grown it indoors, but I don't see why not, as long as it doesn't react to too much forced heat in the winter. Sounds like Turnadaisy does it successfully though!
FigTree commented on 01/12/11
I have grown it for years in front of a south window (in Michigan) I have it planted in a water container (needs to be redone!) and it is 6' ish I'll try to get a pic & put in my gallery, I love it!
Turnadaisy commented on 01/07/11
Very interesting - I don&#x27;t think I have ever seen it before. How cool that it blooms at the bottom. I might have to look up how it was used for ancient paper now - I am curious. Good luck with your indoor experiment - let us know how it goes! <br/>
gardengirl commented on 01/05/11
I would love to grow papyrus! I was in Australia a few years ago, and saw an amazing plant that was blooming - they bloom at the bottom, which I did not know. I&#x27;ll poke around and ask about growing papyrus indoors... I think it would be amazing, and then you could put it outside in the summer for a tropical vibe!
chief cultivator commented on 01/04/11