Alisma plantago-aquatica L.

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Alisma plantago-aquatica

Photo: Bart Wursten
Theo's Restaurant, Enterprise rd, Harare

Alisma plantago-aquatica

Photo: Bart Wursten
Theo's Restaurant, Enterprise rd, Harare

Alisma plantago-aquatica

Photo: Bart Wursten
Theo's Restaurant, Enterprise rd, Harare

Alisma plantago-aquatica

Photo: Bart Wursten
Theo's Restaurant, Enterprise rd, Harare

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Species details: Click on each item to see an explanation of that item (Note: opens a new window)

Common names: Common water-plantain (English)
Frequency: Occasional
Status: Introduced
Perennial aquatic herb, up to 1m, submerged or emergent. Leaves erect in a basal tuft. Flowers in a tall open panicle, white.
Notes: The plants are eaten by birds, not digesting and spreading the seeds. Seeds also float and dispersed by water.
Derivation of specific name:
Habitat: Around Harare in permanent shallow water, rarely on seasonally dry land.
Altitude range: (metres) 1500 m (approx)
Flowering time:Sep - Mar
Worldwide distribution: Known from all temperate regions of the world and mountainous areas in East Africa. Introduced in Angola, Zimbabwe and South Africa. Its true origins are uncertain.
Zimbabwe distribution: C
Growth form(s): Perennial.
Endemic status:
Red data list status:
Insects associated with this species:
Spot characters: Display spot characters for this species
Images last updated: Sunday 16 April 2006

Biegel, H.M. (1977). Check-list of ornamental plants used in Rhodesian parks and gardens. Rhodesia Agricultural Journal. Research Report No. 3. Page 21.

Carter, S. (1960). Alismataceae Flora of Tropical East Africa Pages 5 - 6. (Includes a picture).

Mapaura, A. & Timberlake, J. (eds) (2004). A checklist of Zimbabwean vascular plants Southern African Botanical Diversity Network Report No. 33 Sabonet, Pretoria and Harare Page 84.

Martins, E.S. & Catarino, L. (2009). Alismataceae Flora Zambesiaca 12(2) Pages 2 - 3. (Includes a picture).

Pooley, E. (1998). A Field Guide to the Wild Flowers of KwaZulu-Natal and the Eastern Region. Natal Flora Publications Trust. Durban. Pages 84 - 85. (Includes a picture).

Setshogo, M.P. (2005). Preliminary checklist of the plants of Botswana. Sabonet Report no. 37. Sabonet, Pretoria and Gaborone Page 112.

Other sources of information about Alisma plantago-aquatica:

Our websites:

Flora of Botswana: Alisma plantago-aquatica
Flora of Caprivi: cultivated Alisma plantago-aquatica
Flora of Zimbabwe: cultivated Alisma plantago-aquatica

External websites:

African Plants: A Photo Guide (Senckenberg): Alisma plantago-aquatica
African Plant Database: Alisma plantago-aquatica
BHL (Biodiversity Heritage Library): Alisma plantago-aquatica
EOL (Encyclopedia of Life): Alisma plantago-aquatica
GBIF (Global Biodiversity Information Facility): Alisma plantago-aquatica
Google: Web - Images - Scholar
iNaturalist: Alisma plantago-aquatica
IPNI (International Plant Names Index): Alisma plantago-aquatica
JSTOR Plant Science: Alisma plantago-aquatica
Mansfeld World Database of Agricultural and Horticultural Crops: Alisma plantago-aquatica
Plants of the World Online: Alisma plantago-aquatica
Tropicos: Alisma plantago-aquatica
Wikipedia: Alisma plantago-aquatica

Copyright: Mark Hyde, Bart Wursten, Petra Ballings and Meg Coates Palgrave, 2002-23

Hyde, M.A., Wursten, B.T., Ballings, P. & Coates Palgrave, M. (2023). Flora of Zimbabwe: Species information: Alisma plantago-aquatica., retrieved 2 December 2023

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