Description: Aquatics, mostly perennials with corms or stolons.
Leaves expanded, entire, sometimes sagittate; petiole with a sheathing base.
Inflorescence mostly paniculate, bracteate. Flowers actinomorphic, 3-merous, bisexual or unisexual. Perianth in 2 whorls; outer segments 3, sepaloid; inner segments 3, petaloid, falling early. Stamens 3, 6, 9, 12 or numerous. Carpels superior, free or joined at the base, 3–numerous, whorled or apparently spirally arranged; ovules 1–several per carpel, attached basally or to the inner angle of the carpel.
Aggregate fruit a head of indehiscent nutlets or rarely dehiscent follicles.
Distribution and occurrence: World: 12 genera, c. 100 species, cosmopolitan. Australia: 5 genera, 11 species, all States.
Angiosperm Phylogeny Website (Family: Alismataceae, Order: Alismatales)
Text by S. W. L. Jacobs (1993); edited KL Wilson (June 2010)
| ||Key to the genera|| |
|1||Carpels in several whorls, apparently spirally arranged; flowers unisexual, lower flowers female or bisexual, upper flowers male||Sagittaria|
|Carpels in 1 whorl; flowers bisexual||2|
|2||Carpels roughly triangular with a long beak, united along central axis||Damasonium|
|Carpels rounded on the back, not triangular, not united along central axis, often closely packed|
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