Greek heleos – marsh, chairo – I delight in.
Tufted or rhizomatous herbs. Stems cylindrical or angled. Leaves reduced to a membranous sheath or small point. Inflorescence a single spikelet without bracts and with spirally arranged glumes each containing a flower. Fruit a nut with a persistent style base.
Grown as waterside plants, often to encourage wildlife in indigenous plant projects, farm dams and ponds.
Seed and division.
A few species are used for matting and craft material; E. dulcis is the Chinese Water Chestnut.
Flower spikes without a basal bract; fruits with persistent style bases.
About 200 cosmopolitan species usually of wet habitats and with a centre of distribution in subtropical America (Australia has about 30 species of which about 10 are endemic).
Source: (2005). Cyperaceae. In: . Horticultural Flora of South-eastern Australia. Volume 5. Flowering plants. Monocotyledons. The identification of garden and cultivated plants. University of New South Wales Press.