Family, Pipewort. Color, a leaden white. Stamens and pistils in different flowers, in the same head. Divisions of perianth, in staminate flowers, 2 or 3, narrow, bearded with fine, white hairs; in pistillate flowers, similar, with an inner set of smaller segments. Stamens, 4 to 6. The flowers are so small that their parts can only be made out with a magnifying-glass. A white, woolly beard abounds among them, and covers the base of the scape, which is long enough to bring the flower-heads to the water's surface, and so may be a few inches or several feet in length. The scape is angled with 4 to 7 lines, often twisted. Leaves, short, 1 to 3 inches long, smooth, loosely cellular, transparent, grass-like; none on the flower-stems.
This singular aquatic is not very common. In the ponds where it grows from August to October, under overhanging trees, the surface of the water will be dotted with the white flowers, and where the water is shallow the tips of the leaves can be seen. Its range is from Newfoundland to Texas. (See illustration, p. 45.)
Pipewort (Eriocaitlon articulation)