Plan the perfect garden with our interactive tool →

How to Care for a Corkscrew Rush Plant

rush image by Einar Bog from

The corkscrew rush plant (Juncus effusus), also called soft rush, is a water plant with vibrant green, twisted stems that grow up to 2 feet tall. Corkscrew rush occurs naturally around the edges of bogs, ponds and other wetlands. It does best in full to partial sun and can survive with its roots submerged in as much as 3 inches of water. Corkscrew rush spreads very quickly and is best grown in a container to keep it from interfering with other plants.

Fill a planting container 3/4 full with heavy clay soil. Plant the corkscrew rush at the same depth as it was previously growing. Cover the soil with 1 inch of medium-sized gravel.

Place the container in the chosen growing location. The crown of the plant should not be submerged in more than 3 inches in the water.

Feed once each month during the growing season with liquid fertilizer mixed at half the recommended strength.

Cut off any damaged or dead stems as they appear using sharp scissors. Remove all winter-damaged stems in early spring.

Care For A Corkscrew Grass Marshland Plant

Water corkscrew grass when the top one-half to one inch of soil becomes dry. Never let the soil dry out completely. Pour the fertilizer onto the soil surrounding the plant at a rate of 1/4 gallon per 2 1/2 square feet of soil. Spread a 1-inch layer of bark mulch over the soil surrounding the plant to retain moisture and reduce weed growth. Push the shovel horizontally under the plant to free it from the surrounding soil. Spray foliage infested with aphids with an insecticidal soap or neem oil.


Plant corkscrew rush as soon after purchase as possible. Corkscrew rush can be planted directly into the soil in areas where control of its growth is not necessary. This plant can also be grown indoors as a houseplant as long as the soil is kept extremely moist.


Do not use potting soil when planting the corkscrew rush plant. It is too light to be submerged in water and will float to the top.

Garden Guides