Northern Prairie Wildlife Research Center
Western Wetland Flora
Field Office Guide to Plant Species
Lemna trisulca L.
- Family: Duckweed (Lemnaceae)
- Flowering: June-October
- Field Marks: This is the easiest duckweed to identify because of the elliptic fronds that taper to a narrow stalk at the base. The leaves usually cohere to each other in colonies.
- Habitat: Quiet waters of streams, lakes, ponds, and ditches.
- Habit: Floating aquatic plant, the fronds forming colonies of many individuals; one root per frond or absent.
- Stems: O.
- Leaves: Fronds elliptic, up to 1/2 inch long, up to 1/4 inch wide, with a narrow stalk at the base, flat, with 3 obscure veins, very finely toothed.
- Flowers: Rarely seen; when present, 2-3 in a microscopic pouch.
- Sepals: O.
- Petals: O.
- Stamens: 1 per flower.
- Pistils: 1 per flower.
- Fruits: Rarely seen; when present, 1-seeded.
- Notes: Although this species flowers and sets seeds on occasion, it usually reproduces asexually with new fronds developing on either side of the parent frond. The fronds are eaten by waterfowl. There is a report of this plant from Texas.
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