Acorus calamus, commonly known as Sweet Flag or Calamus, and erroneously as "rush" or "sedges", is a tall perennial wetland monocot of the Acoraceae family, in the genus Acorus. Other names include beewort, bitter pepper root, calamus root, flag root,gladdon, myrtle flag, myrtle grass, myrtle root, myrtle sedge, pine root, sea sedge, sweet cane, sweet case, sweet cinnamon, sweet grass, sweet myrtle, sweet root, sweet rush, and sweet sedge. The scented leaves and more strongly scented rhizomes have traditionally been used medicinally and to make fragrances, and the dried and powdered rhizome has been used as a substitute for ginger, cinnamon and nutmeg.
Probably indigenous to India or Arabia, Acorus calamus is now found across Europe, southern Russia, northern Asia Minor, southern Siberia, China, Indonesia, Japan, Burma, Sri Lanka, Australia, as well as southern Canada and the northern United States, where it may be confused with diploid Acorus americanus.Common name:
Bach, Gora-Bach, Vacha, Ugragandha, Ugra, Sadgrantha, Acorus calamus, calamus root, flag root, myrtle flag, sweet flag, calamusColor:
Flowers not showyHeight:
Height: 2.00 to 2.50 feet
Spread: 1.50 to 2.00 feetDifficulty level:
EasyPlanting & Care
Easily grown in average, medium to wet soils in full sun to part shade. Grows well in both boggy conditions (including shallow standing water to 9” deep) and consistently moist garden soils. In water gardens, plant rhizomes slightly below the soil surface in moist soils at the water’s edge or in containers set in shallow water.
Rhizomes or existing clumps may also be planted in containers sunk into wet boggy areas to help prevent any possible aggressive spread. Scorched leaf tips will occur if soils are allowed to dry out. Appreciates some relief from hot summer sun (e.g., afternoon shade or filtered sun) when grown in hot summer climates. Slowly naturalizes by creeping rhizomes and can form large colonies in the wild.Sunlight:
Full sun to part shadeSoil:
Poorly Drained Clay, Loam, Sand soil with Acidic, Neutral pH.lWater:
Medium to wetFertilizer:
Starter fertilizers may be used indoors to improve.Care:
- Planting Dig holes or beds wide, not deep Lightly amend heavy clay or sandy soils with organic matter Gently remove plants from containers, keeping the root ball intact Loosen potting soil and roots around bottom and edges of root ball Plant level with surrounding soil, spreading roots outward Fill around roots with lightly amended native soil Water to settle soil around roots Cover the area with leaf or bark mulch 1 - 3 inches thick but not piled up onto the plant s stem/trunk Water deeply
- Pruning Tall or leggy plants may be cut or pinched back to stimulate strong new growth Cut or pinch stems of flowering or foliage plants just above leaves or old leaf joints Thin excess growth so remaining growth will be more vigorous "Deadhead" - remove faded flowers or seedheads to stimulate new flowering growth Remove dead, faded, or diseased foliage as needed Remove some foliage during transplanting to reduce stress on new roots Clean up plants at the end of the season to reduce pest or disease buildup and to keep the area neat Avoid putting diseased plant parts in the compost, or risk spreading diseases later Propagation Divide clump-forming perennials such as hosta, daylily, iris, sedum, phlox, and most ornamental grasses in the late fall or late winter into individual plants, each with a piece of stem, crown (body), and roots Sow seed of perennials such as coneflowers, coreopsis, and others in the late summer or late spring, keeping them moist and giving them enough time to sprout and grow roots before extreme cold or hot weather Some perennials, including sedum and phlox, root readily from stem cuttings taken in summer Keep newly-propagated perennials moist, not wet, and cover the soil underneath with mulch to protect roots from weather extremes and to reduce competition from weeds
Sweet flag is a deciduous, spreading, marginal aquatic perennial that features iris-like, sword-shaped leaf blades (to 3/4” wide) typically growing to 30” tall. Mature leaves have one wavy edge and a prominent midrib. Use