Quick Facts


Scientific name Cyperus blepharoleptos
(formerly classified as Oxycarium cubense)
Origin South & Central America to Mexico
Introduction Late 1880s – Migratory birds / ship ballast
Aquatic community Emergent
Habitat Rooted in wet soils to floating mats
Distribution Statewide – expanding
Management effort Maintenance to lowest feasible level
2017 public waters / plant acres 241 (52%) / 645
2017 Waters / acres controlled 96 / 3410
Cyperus blepharoleptos

Cyperus blepharoleptos

Management Options

Biological None available
Chemical Glyphosate, Diquat, 2,4-D, Imazapyr
Mechanical Occasionally harvest mats
Physical Occasional drawdown and fire

Environmental and Economic Concerns

  • Perennial, rhizomatous emergent plant
  • Rooted in the substrate – frequent floating mats
  • Forms dense rooted stands that can alter habitats and exclude native plants
  • Fragments drift into and colonize stands of emergent plants
    • overgrow and outcompete other emergent plants
    • dense floating / drifting mats shade out submersed plants
    • restrict water flow and motor boat traffic
  • Reproduces by seeds and fragment that drift to and colonize new areas
    • contribute to rapid spread and invasiveness
    • fragments easily spread by boat traffic or water movement
  • Expanded from a few Florida public waters in the 1980s to more than half in 2017
  • Two biotypes in Florida – O. cubense forma cubense, and O. cubense forma paraguayense
    • Not understood if different biotypes react differently to different herbicides and rates

Florida Fish & Wildlife Conservation Commission, Status of the Aquatic Plant Maintenance Program in Florida Public Waters, Annual Report – Fiscal Year 2016-2017.