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Key to families | Table of families and genera

Specimen numbers are hyperlinked to records in the Consortium of California Herbaria data view where possible. Taxa are hyperlinked to entries in the Jepson Interchange via the "[Online Interchange]" link.


Stem: Erect underwater, ± prostrate on wet ground, branched or not; base not woody. Leaf: petiole < 1/3 blade, flat, ± blade-like; blades narrow-elliptic to ± round, ± entire, bases wedge-shaped to ± round, tips round. Inflorescence: flowers 1(2) per node. Flower: sepals, petals wide-elliptic, membranous; sepals pale green; petals pale green-white; stamens (1) 3, 6, 8, filaments 1/2 × to ± equal petals, anthers wide-ovoid; styles 3–4. Fruit: ± spheric or depressed-ovoid; chambers 3–4, each 3–15-seeded; pedicel generally ± 0. Seed: ± visible through fruit wall, elliptic, straight or curved, brown to yellow-brown; surface net-like due to ridges between ± linear rows of pits.
± 25 species: worldwide. (Greek: fir tree, from a European species that suggests such a plant in miniature) At least 20× magnification needed for pits on seeds.

Key to Elatine

1. Sepals, petals 4; stamens 8; pedicels elongating in fruit to 2–3 × fruit; seeds curved 90–180° ..... E. californica

1' Sepals 2–3, petals 3; stamens (1) 3, 6; pedicels generally ± 0, occasionally ± elongating in fruit to <= 1/2 fruit; seeds straight or curved <= 30°

2. Flower subsessile to stalked, ± erect; fruit pedicel turned to 1 side; sepals 3, ± equal ..... E. ambigua

2' Flower sessile, erect; fruit pedicel not turned to 1 side; sepals 2, ± equal, or 3, 1 < others

3. Stamens (1) 6 (if 3, opposite petals) ..... E. heterandra

3' Stamens 3, alternate petals

4. Seed pits 10–15 per row ..... E. brachysperma

4' Seed pits 16–35 per row

5. Seed pits wider than long ..... E. chilensis

5' Seed pits ± as wide as long ..... E. rubella


Citation for the whole project: Jepson Flora Project (eds.) [year] Jepson eFlora, [accessed on month, day, year]
Citation for an individual treatment: [Author of taxon treatment] [year]. [Taxon name] in Jepson Flora Project (eds.) Jepson eFlora, [URL for treatment]. Accessed on [month, day, year].
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