Description: Emergent rhizomatous aquatic perennials; stems usually simple.
Leaves radical at first, distichous and alternate as flowering stem elongates, emergent or floating, linear, with blade and sheathing base.
Inflorescence spicate or racemose arrangement of dense unisexual clusters, each branch or cluster (where spicate) subtended by a leaf-like bract; female clusters below male clusters on each axis. Flowers unisexual, sessile. Perianth segments 3–6, membranous, less than half as long as filaments. Male flowers with 1–8 free or partly fused stamens; anthers basifixed, 2-locular; ovary absent. Female flowers with superior 1-, 2- [or 3-]locular ovary; ovule 1 per loculus; styles as many as carpels, persisting in fruit; stigmas solitary or branched.
Individual fruit indehiscent, tough, 1-seeded.
Distribution and occurrence: World: 1 genus, <20 species, mostly Northern Hemisphere. Australia: 2 species (1 species native, 1 species naturalized), Qld, N.S.W., Vic.
Angiosperm Phylogeny Website (Family: Typhaceae, Order: Poales)
Text by S. W. L. Jacobs
|One genus in NSW: Sparganium|