More about Cottongrass:

Today, Cottongrass is spreading in Laponia due to global warming. It often grows in hollows left by so-called palsas or thermokarst mounds palTsar – i.e. mounds of peat that have remained frozen due to permafrost, and which have begun to melt. This is a sign of climate change in Laponia.

Cottongrass does not grow above the tree line to any great extent. However there is a relative – White Cottongrass – with very small, intensively white and neat cotton bolls. White Cottongrass grows on wetlands on high lying mountain moors. Out on the large wetlands in Laponia we can also find a reddish-brown species, called Bronze Cottongrass.

Cottongrass

Eriophorum angustifolium

Common Cottongrass is a sage species that grows in wetlands in many parts of Sweden. It does not need so much nutrition, so Cottongrass also grows in nutrient-poor wetlands. It has a characteristic appearance, with seed-heads that after blooming resemble feather-like cotton bolls. The bolls are often close together. Since the same plant can have several stems, they look like tufts of cotton.

Historically, tufts of Cottongrass have been used instead of bird feathers, for example in blankets, pillows and other filling. Cottongrass is less suited since it quickly becomes lumpy. Therefore it has been called poor man’s featherbed or poor man’s blanket.