Cyperus papyrus  L. Bulrush  - Cyperaceae

The rhizomes (underground stems) of the bulrush of the Bible, Cyperus papyrus, are cut into sections and used as beads in several countries of Central Africa.  It is a perennial sedge of banks and shores in quietly flowing water in north and tropical Africa.  Thin strips of the leaf pith, pressed together while still wet, formed the ancient papyrus or writing paper of Palestine, Syria and Egypt.