West Highland Flora

Branched Bur-reed


Sparganium erectum

 

Sparganium erectum

Photo Carl Farmer
6 Aug 2003 Dunvegan, Skye

Occasional in loch margins and burns in lowland areas.

Plant up to 150 cm high.  Leaves c 10-15 mm wide.  Fruiting heads c 20-30 mm across.

ID: Unlike other Bur-reeds, the flowering stem is branched.  Each branch has one or more female heads at the base, and several male heads further out.  In the other species the unbranched stem has all the female heads below all the male ones.

Other features: No flower pictures yet but see other Bur-reeds for general appearance.  Fruit shape is very variable.  The leaves and stems are upright, not floating.  Unbranched Bur-reed usually has some leaves upright and some floating.  The other two species have most leaves floating.

 

Sparganium erectum

Photo Carl Farmer
11 Aug 2003 Torrin, Skye
 

  Sparganium erectum

Photo Carl Farmer
11 Aug 2003 Torrin, Skye

Crumbling remains of male heads to left of
fruiting female head
  Close-up of fruits

 

Sparganium erectum

Photo Carl Farmer
6 Aug 2003 Dunvegan, Skye

  Sparganium erectum

Photo Carl Farmer
11 Aug 2003 Torrin, Skye
Top fruit-head 25 mm across

Above: The tall, bright green leaves and stems
form a dense stand in the loch

Right: Spike with angles where male heads
have fallen off, above the fruiting
female ones.

 


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