On-Line Key to the Genus Lemna
Home Keys To Genera List Of Species Search Lemna Spirodela Wolffia Wolffiella Wayne's Word
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Genus: Lemna

Keys To This Genus

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Plant body flattened or with inflated (gibbous) ventral side, generally oval-oblong in outline with 1-3 (5) veins, 2-5 mm long (longer in L. trisulca), pale (transparent) green or dark green, often suffused with reddish anthocyanin; floating solitary are attached in clusters of 2-8 (or more) by a short stipe (or elongate stipe in L. trisulca); dorsal surface often with row of papules along midline; budding pouches 2, on either side (lateral) of basal end; daughter plants produced in budding pouches (turions also produced in pouches of L. turionifera); needlelike (raphide) crystals of calcium oxalate throughout parenchyma; solitary root with basal root sheath near attachment on ventral side, thicker fronds often with deep root furrow (groove); one bisexual flower produced within membranous spathe (utricular scale) inside each lateral budding pouch, consisting of a single pistil flanked by 2 stamens (some authorities consider this to be an inflorescence with 3 unisexual flowers); anthers bilocular and transversely dehiscent; ovary unilocular with 1 amphitropous or orthotropous ovule (or 2-4 anatropous ovules); utricle globular and slightly compressed (sometimes winged), bearing 1-several longitudinally-ribbed seeds (rarely smooth), some species with transverse striations between ribs, seeds with distinct operculum; 13 spp. worldwide; ancient Greek name for water plant used by Theophrastus, possibly derived from limne, referring to lake or swampy area; Den Hartog & Van der Plas (1970), Blumea 18: 355-368; Clark, H.L. (1979), Aquatic and Wetland Plants of the S.E. United States: 464-476.

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