Photo: Heterantha dubia

Heterantha dubia (Jacq.) MacM.

Water Stargrass

Habitat: Damp sands, often submerged in quiet waters. [Open water (non-forested, wetland)]

Range: Southern Quebec to North Dakota and Washington, south to Cuba and South America.

Aids to Identification: This perennial aquatic plant usually grows in shallow water with its stem submersed. The leaves are grass-like and up to 15 cm long. The flowers are pale yellow, and the fruits are black. It can be recognized vegetatively by its alternate, narrow, parallel-sided leaves with many fine veins. The leaves lack a more prominent central vein.

Photo: Heterantha dubia

Ecological characteristics: In Maine, this species may occur along shallow shorelines or in open water.

Phenology: Flowers June - September.

Family: Pontederiaceae

Synonyms: Commelina dubia Jacq.; Heterantha graminea (Michx.) Vahl; Zosterella dubia (Jacq.) Small.

Known Distribution in Maine: This rare plant has been documented from a total of 15 town(s) in the following county(ies): Aroostook, Hancock, Kennebec, Penobscot, Somerset, Waldo.

Reason(s) for rarity: At northern limit of range.

Conservation considerations: Maintain water quality in the lakes and ponds in which it occurs.