Pontederiaceae (Pickerelweed Family)
An aquatic herb with a creeping rhizome beneath the water, growing to a height of 30 - 60 cm in and above water.
Distinguishing Features - Leaves: long, basal, heart-shaped, indented at bases and tapering to a point, extending above the water, 10 - 25 cm long. Flowers: whitish to violet-blue, 8 mm long, funnel-shaped, with 3-lobed upper lip, the middle one marked with 2 yellow spots; 3 lower flower parts separate; 6 stamens - 3 long and 3 short; 2 bracts present beneath flower spike, the lower one resembling the basal leaves, the upper one a sheath. Fruit: seed-like.
Native of North America; Ontario to Nova Scotia and New England; south to Florida; west to Oklahoma; north to Minnesota; typically in shallow, quiet water in marshes, edges of ponds, lakes, and streams.
The name "Pickerelweed" implies that this plant, as well as the fish known as "pickerel", share the same habitat.
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