Field Horsetail (Equisetum arvense)

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Item #: EQARV
Binomial Equisetum arvense

Field horsetail is not an ideal plant for for formal flower beds as it spreads aggressively and, over time, forms dense colonies.  Nevertheless, it is an interesting plant and could be used in less-formal rain gardens and container gardening.

As a descendant of pre-historic plants that existed 400 million years ago, it is no surprise that field horsetail is circumpolar and found from Alaska to Brazil and England to Japan.  Historically, it has been used as a diuretic, a component of dyes and perfumes, to scour and polish, and the young shoots were eaten by Native Americans and early settlers.

A handful of insects are known to feed on the foliage, but the high silica content of horsetails deters many herbivores.

Uses: Rain gardens, erosion prevention, medicinal, historical interest
Bloomtime: Spores released March - April

Height:  1 to 2 feet
Space:  10 to 18 inches

Sun:  Full sun to light shade
Moisture:  Average to wet

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