Common name: Ribbonweed, Eelweed
Vallisneria australis S.W.L.Jacobs & Les APNI*
Synonyms: Vallisneria americana auct. non L. APNI*
Vallisneria spiralis auct. non L. p.p. APNI*
Vallisneria gigantea auct.non Graebn. p.p. APNI*
Description: Submerged tufted stoloniferous aquatic perennial; stolons white or light brown, rooting at the nodes.
Leaves all basal, strap-shaped, to 3 m long and 11–35 mm wide, with obtuse apex, margins finely toothed near apex, 5–7 major longitudinal nerves.
Male flowers < 1 mm diam.; spathe 10–25 mm long; peduncle 2–5 cm long; outer perianth segments 3, 2 larger than the other, all minute; stamens 2; filaments fused for 75% of the length (hence Y-shaped); haris present in the androecium. Female flowers (1.9)-2.5–4 mm long on a peduncle to 2 m long, c. 5 mm in diam. when open, pink or white inside; spathe 15–20 mm long; ovary 15–25 mm long; outer perianth segments 1–2 mm long, inner minute.
Seeds 1.5–2.0 mm long.
Flowering: during warmer months.
Distribution and occurrence: Widespread; also in Qld (possibly introduced in some parts), Vic, Tas (possibly introduced there), SA; introduced in WA.
Grows in stationary or flowing freshwater to 7 m deep on a variety of substrates, in perennial streams, dams and irrigation channels.
NSW subdivisions: NC, CC, SC, NT, CT, ST, CWS, SWS, NWP, SWP, SFWP
Other Australian states: Qld Vic. Tas. S.A. *W.A.
Previously confused with V. americana, V. gigantea and V. spiralis.
Text by S. W. L. Jacobs (1993); edited KL Wilson (March 2011) after Les, Jacobs et al. (2008) and SWL Jacobs (ms 2007)
Taxon concept: Flora of NSW 4 (1993) p.p.; Les, Jacobs et al. (2008)
APNI* Provides a link to the Australian Plant Name Index (hosted by the Australian National Botanic Gardens) for comprehensive bibliographic data
***The AVH map option provides a detailed interactive Australia wide distribution map drawn from collections held by all major Australian herbaria participating in the Australian Virtual Herbarium project.