Sagittaria teres S. Wats.

quill-leaved arrowhead

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New England Distribution

Adapted from BONAP data

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North America Distribution

Adapted from BONAP data

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Facts About

Quill-leaved arrowhead is a rare endemic with a limited range from New England south to New Jersey. It inhabits coastal plain ponds and swamps, and is the only species of arrowhead (Sagittaria) with terete (round rather than flattened) leaf blades.

Habitat

Lacustrine (in lakes or ponds), shores of rivers or lakes

Characteristics

Habitat
  • aquatic
  • wetlands
New England state
  • Connecticut
  • Massachusetts
  • New Hampshire
  • Rhode Island
Leaf position
  • some of the leaves are floating at the surface of the water
  • the leaves are all submerged underwater
Leaf arrangement
basal: the leaves are growing only at the base of the plant
Leaf blade length
35–600 mm
Petal or sepal number
there are three petals, sepals, or tepals in the flower
Petal color
white
Specific leaf type
the leaf is not divided, rather the blade is made up of one segment
Floating leaf shape
NA
Underwater leaf blade width
1.5–4 mm
Fruit type (general)
the fruit is dry but does not split open when ripe
Underwater leaf length
35–185 mm
Show All Characteristics
  • Clonal plantlets
    Turion length
    0 mm
  • Flowers
    Anther color
    there is a noticeable pink, reddish or purplish tint to the anthers
    Carpels fused
    the carpel is solitary or (if 2 or more) the carpels are not fused to one another
    Flower lower lip length
    0 mm
    Flower position
    • the flowers are above the surface of the water
    • the flowers are below the surface of the water
    • the flowers are floating on the surface of the water
    Flower symmetry
    there are two or more ways to evenly divide the flower (the flower is radially symmetrical)
    Inflorescence length
    25–40 mm
    Inflorescence type
    the inflorescence is a raceme (a long unbranched stem with stalked flowers growing along it)
    Inflorescence width
    25–60 mm
    Length of flower stalk
    10–30 mm
    Length of peduncle
    100–800 mm
    Nectar spur
    the flower has no nectar spurs
    Number of carpels
    At least 3
    Ovary position
    the sepals and/or petals are attached below the ovary
    Palate on corolla
    no
    Petal and sepal arrangement
    the flower includes two cycles of petal- or sepal-like structures
    Petal appearance
    the petals are thin and delicate, and pigmented (colored other than green or brown)
    Petal color
    white
    Petal fringed edges
    the petals are not fringed
    Petal fusion
    the perianth parts are separate
    Petal hairs on inner/upper surface
    there are no hairs on the inner/upper petal surface
    Petal number
    3
    Petal or sepal number
    there are three petals, sepals, or tepals in the flower
    Pistil number
    6 or more
    Sepal appearance
    the sepals resemble leaves in color and texture
    Sepal length
    3–5 mm
    Sepal number
    3
    Spur length
    0 mm
    Stamen number
    • 12
    • 13 or more
    Stamen position relative to petals
    NA
    Stamens fused to petals
    the stamens are not fused to the petals or tepals
  • Fruits or seeds
    Fruit beak length
    0.3–0.4 mm
    Fruit length
    2–2.7 mm
    Fruit type (general)
    the fruit is dry but does not split open when ripe
    Fruit type (specific)
    the fruit is an achene (dry, usually 1-seeded, does not separate or split open at maturity)
    Fruit width
    1.3–1.8 mm
  • Glands or sap
    Sap
    the sap is milky and opaque, and may be white or colored
  • Growth form
    Lifespan
    the plant lives more than two years
    Root septa
    the roots have transverse septa
    Roots floating in water
    there are no clusters of roots floating in the water
    Turions
    there are no turions on the plant
    Underground organs
    the plant has one or more swollen storage organs underground, such as bulbs, tubers or corms
  • Leaves
    Bract position (Sparganium)
    NA
    Bract relative length
    At least 1379 mm
    Bracts
    the flowers or their pedicels have bracts at their bases
    Floating leaf basal lobes
    no
    Floating leaf blade width
    0 mm
    Floating leaf length
    0 mm
    Floating leaf shape
    NA
    Floating leaf tip
    NA
    Floral bract form
    the bracts are roughly as lobed as the foliage leaves
    Floral bract length
    2–3 mm
    Leaf arrangement
    basal: the leaves are growing only at the base of the plant
    Leaf blade length
    35–600 mm
    Leaf blade veins
    the lateral veins are parallel or slightly arched in the direction of the tip
    Leaf blade width
    1.5–7 mm
    Leaf position
    • some of the leaves are floating at the surface of the water
    • the leaves are all submerged underwater
    Leaf special features
    none of the mentioned special features are present
    Leaf-like branch segments
    0
    Leaf-like branch shape
    the leaf-like branches are round
    Specific leaf type
    the leaf is not divided, rather the blade is made up of one segment
    Staminate bract edge (Myriophyllum)
    NA
    Stipule appearance
    NA
    Stipule fused to leaf
    NA
    Stipules
    there are no stipules on the plant
    Stipules fused around stem
    NA
    Trap-bladder length
    0 mm
    Underwater leaf blade edges
    the underwater leaf has smooth edges, without teeth
    Underwater leaf blade shape
    the underwater leaf blade is linear (very narrow with more or less parallel sides)
    Underwater leaf blade width
    1.5–4 mm
    Underwater leaf length
    35–185 mm
    Underwater leaf stalk
    no
    Underwater leaf stalk length
    0 mm
    Underwater leaf tip shape
    the tip of the underwater leaf is acute (sharply pointed)
    Veins in floating leaf
    0
  • Place
    Habitat
    • aquatic
    • wetlands
    New England state
    • Connecticut
    • Massachusetts
    • New Hampshire
    • Rhode Island
    Specific habitat
    • in lakes or ponds
    • shores of rivers or lakes
  • Stem, shoot, branch
    Flowering stem growth form
    • the flowering stem is upright
    • the flowering stem trails along the substrate, or floats in the water

Wetland Status

Occurs only in wetlands. (Wetland indicator code: OBL)

New England Distribution and Conservation Status

Distribution

Connecticut
present
Maine
absent
Massachusetts
present
New Hampshire
present
Rhode Island
present
Vermont
absent

Conservation Status

Exact status definitions can vary from state to state. For details, please check with your state.

Massachusetts
uncommon (S-rank: S3), special concern (code: SC)
New Hampshire
extremely rare (S-rank: S1), endangered (code: E)
Rhode Island
extremely rare (S-rank: S1), state endangered (code: SE)

Native to North America?

Yes

Sometimes Confused With

Sagittaria graminea:
leaves flattened, with or without a small blade at the apex, with parallel margins for most of length (vs. S. teres, with leaves terete to elliptic in cross-section, never with a blade, tapering from near base to apex).

Synonyms

  • Sagittaria graminea Michx. var. teres (S. Wats.) Bogin

Family

Alismataceae

Genus

Sagittaria

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Information from Dichotomous Key of Flora Novae Angliae

9.  Sagittaria teres S. Wats. NC

quill-leaved arrowhead. Sagittaria graminea Michx. var. teres (S. Wats.) Bogin • CT, MA, NH, RI. Primarily acidic water of sandy, or sometimes muddy, coastal plain ponds.