Encyclopedia Article


One of the most common wetland plants, cattails (or Typha) are reeds with tall, narrow leaves that can reach up to 10 feet in height. The plant's name is a reference to its unique-looking flowering spike, which turn into elongated fluffy seed heads in autumn. Native Americans all over the continent used cattail seeds and roots as food and medicine sources and the plant's stalks and leaves as weaving materials. A native plant of the Southwest, cattail's symbolism among Navajo and Pueblo peoples is usually related to water and rain.

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"Cattails, August 26, 2012" by Robert & Pat Rogers is licensed under CC BY.

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