Plants aquatic, with the leaves parallel'veined, mostly dilated at base, Fls. spath-aceous. Perianth tubular, colored, 6-parted, often irregular and circinate after flowering. Stamens 3 or 6, unequal perigynous. Ovary free, 3-celled. Style1. Stigma simple. Capsule 3 (sometimes l)-celled, 3-valved, with loculicidal dehiscence. Seeds numerous (sometimes solitary), attached to a central axis. Albumen, farinaceous.
Genera C, species 30, found exclusively in America, E. Indies, and tropical Africa. They are of no known use.
Flowers irregular, blue. Stamens 6. Utricle 1-seeded...........................
Flowers regular. - Anthers 3, of 2 forms. Leaves reniform....................
- Anthers 3, of 2 one form. Leaves linear..................
i. PONTEDE'RIA, L. Pickerel Weed. (In honor of Julius Pon-tcdera, a botanic author and professor, of Padua, about 1720.) Perianth bilabiate, tubular at base, under side of the tube split with 3 longitudi-nal clefts (the 2 lower sepals free), circinate after flowering and persis-tent; stamens unequally inserted, 3 near the base and 3 at the summit of the tube; utricle 1-seeded (2 cells abortive). - Lvs. radical, long-petioled. St. 1-leaved, bearing a spike of blue fls.
1 P. cordata L. Lvs. cordate-oblong, obtuse; petiole shorter than the peduncle,' spike cylindrical, pubescent. - Can. and U. S. A fine, conspicuous plant, native of the borders of muddy lakes, etc, growing in patches extending from the shores to deep water. Stem thick, round, erect, arising 1 - 2f above the water, bearing a single leaf. Leaves 4 - 7' by 1 1/2 - 3', very smooth and glossy, almost sagittate, with veins beautifully arranged to conform to the margin. Flowers in a spike, arising above the spathe, very irregular. Perianth 2-lipped, each lip 8-cleft, always blue, appearing in July.
β. angustifolia.Torr Lvs. narrow, truncate and subcordate at base.
2 P. lancifolia Mulil. Lvs. lance-oblong or lance-linear, rather acute at each end; petiole shorter than the peduncle; spike cylindrical, pubescent. - Pools and ditches, Ga. (Feay) and S. Car. More slender every way than the other, 15 to 30' high. We can detect no difference in it3 flowers, but the permanent difference of the leaves is worthy of consideration. Apr., May.
2. HETERAN'THERA, Ruiz & Pav. (Gr. otherwise, the anthers being dissimilar in the same flower.) Spathe several-flowered; tube of the perianth long and slender, limb 6-parted, equal; stamens 3; anthers of 2 forms, the lower oblong-sagittate, on a longer filament; capsule 3-celled, many-seeded. Lvs. mostly reniform, long-petioled.
H. reniformis P. & P. St. prostrate or floating; lvs. suborbicular, reniform or auriculate at base; spathe acuminate, few-flowered. - On muddy or inundated banks, Mid and W. States. Stem 4' to a foot or more in length. Leaves 1/2' by 3/4', on petioles 1 - 2' long, with a broad sinus at base, and a short, abrupt acumi-nation. Spathe closely enveloping the 2 or 3 very evanescent, white flowers. Tube of the perianth 1/2' long, limb in 6 oblong segments. Filaments inserted at the orifice, 2 of the anthers small, round, yellow, the other oblong, greenish, Jl. Aug. (Leptanthus, Mx.)
3. SCHOL'LERA, Schreber. (Dedicated to one Scholler, a German botanist.) Spathe several-flowered; tube of the perianth very long and slender, limb 6-parted, equal; stamens 3, with similar anthers; capsule 1-celled, many-seeded. - Lvs. alternate, sheathing at base, grass-like, submersed. St. floating, rooting at the lower joints.
S. graminea Wiild. A grass-like aquatic, in flowing water, N. States. St. slender, dichotomous, 1 to 2f long. Lvs. 3 to 6' long, 1 to 2" wide, obtuse at apex, slightly sheathing at base. Flower solitary, issuing from a short (1' spathe), tube 1 1/2' long, limb in 6 linear-lanceolate sagments, yellow. Stam. 3 (4, anthers); filaments broad, one of them abortive, the other 2 with linear anthers longer than the thick style. Jl, Aug. (Leptanthus, Mx.)