I have been given permission to cut some bullrushes from a stream in a farmers field.

As I want to preserve/dry them and display in a vase/s can anyone tell me the best way to do this, preserve that is

Overkill: Process and solution for preserving green plant tissues

I used to just set cattails out to dry on the floor of the garage. That worked.

Thanks Squink.

I actually Googled and found a site that tells me that bullrushes more or less preserve and dry out themselves if hung upside down in a cool place, a garage for example

Once this is done I simply spray them lightly with hairspray? to preserve 'em

The hairspray’s probably a good plan. I didn’t have trouble with the heads shedding, but that probably depends on the exact species involved.

How about spray urethane? They should last a long time with that on them.

this can work too, if they are right on the verge of becomeing “ripe”

5 parts water
2 parts glycerine

the mixture is absorbed through the plants… the gylcerine stays and gums up the plants

remove from water after about 10 days…

Hang up-side down for 3 weeks

result “embalmed plants”


I recall many years ago my brother and I brought some home. A few weeks later we came home to an explosion of bullrush fluff. :smiley:

I take bulrush to be a sedge.

A cattail should be picked while the head is still immature, or when it dries and it gets hot there will be a large mess.

Spray the heads with a sealer.

Glycerine is used when a plant needs to remain pliable.

Final drying should be with the plant material hanging upside down.
Set up a cord across the room where you want to dry plants. Twist a rubber band around the plant stem. loop the rubber band over the cord. Fasten the rubber band onto the stem one last time. It’s quick and easy to hang them this way, and they don’t drop as they dry to the floor. The rubber band adjusts to the smaller stem during drying.

It’s the same for a sedge type bulrush.

What the fuck is a bullrush? I always thought it was some kind of bird. I should post this in that thread about how long it took to discover really obvious things.

That’s a Bullfinch, often seen near Bullrushes :slight_smile:

Thanks for all advice you guys

Marginal aquatic reed-like plant. They look like this:

We had some of these that were simply dried and (for some reason) dyed orange - they lasted for years and years, but one day, we came home and they had exploded into big piles of fluff and seeds - all of them at the same time - must have been exceptionally humid or something, I guess.

There are a number of shops near me that sell them dyed all colours, they look pretty abysmal IMO.

Natural colour is far better

Incidentally, a pal of mine used to soak the heads in a mix of petrol and oil and use them as lights when having evening barbecues…when it wasn’t raining