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Common Names in English:
Common Names in French:
Massette De Shuttleworth
, of fresh to slightly brackish
wetlands, often emergent, rhizomatous
in flower, smooth
. Leaves basal and cauline, 2-ranked, mostly ascending
overlapping, clear, summit tapered into blade
; blades twisted into loose
helix, narrowly linear-attenuate, apex acute, aerenchyma
. Inflorescences 1, terminal
, equaled or exceeded by cauline leaves, cylindric
, spikelike (hereafter "spikes") ; staminate
spike flowers deciduous but axis generally persistent
; staminate spike distal to pistillate
spike; young spikes subtended by early-deciduous bracts resembling reduced foliage
leaves, 1 bract subtending pistillate spike, 1 bract subtending and several within staminate spike;,staminate spike flowers deciduous but axis generally persistent; staminate axis with numerous
or branched scales
arising among flowers; pistillate axis with numerous projections ("compound pedicels"), evident on denuded
fruiting spike, each bearing several flowers; in some species flowers subtended by slender bracteoles. Flowers unisexual
, staminate and pistillate on same plants
, numerous, densely packed in unisexual spikes, minute, wind-pollinated (stigmas receptive several days before pollen is shed) ; perianth probably represented by staminate scales and by hairs
on stipes of pistillate flowers. Staminate flowers
; stamens 1--several, filaments
distally extended. Pistillate flowers hypogynous, stipitate (stipe bearing numerous straight hairs, developing after flowering, acting in wind dispersal
of fruits) ; pistils 1, 1-carpellate; ovariesy 1-locular; placentation apical; ovules 1; styles 1, unbranched; stigmas 1, whitish or green, drying brown, 1-sided, smooth; agamous
flowers numerous (ovaries modified after flowering as carpodia) . Fruits follicles, fusiform
; pericarp clear, hyalinetransparent, splitting
longitudinally in water to release
seed. Seeds: endosperm starchy, oily; embryo cylindric.
Genus Genera 1, species ca. 8--13 (3 in the flora ) : boreal to tropical regions worldwide.
The extensive literature on morphology and taxonomy of Typhaceae has been recently reviewed by (U. Müller-Doblies and D. Müller-Doblies (1977) ; R. M. T. Dahlgren and H. T. Clifford (1982) ; R. M. T. Dahlgren et al. (19853) ; and J. W. Thieret and J. O. Luken (1996) . The inflorescence is probably reduced from a compound structure.
Sparganium and Typha are very similar and perhaps should be placed in one family , as summarized by J. W. Thieret and J. O. Luken (1996) : T (J. W. Thieret and J. O. Luken 1996) . Other authors (e.g. , D. Müller-Doblies 1970; U. Müller-Doblies and D. Müller-Doblies 1977; W. Schultze-Motel 1980) placed Sparganium in the Typhaceae.
Pre-Englerian [authors] ... placed Typha and Sparganium together in a single family, the Typhaceae. [H. G. A.] Engler (1886) put these genera in separate families, thus starting a tradition that has been followed by almost all subsequent authors until recently, when [D.] Müller-Doblies (1970) re-examined the relationships of the genera and concluded that "the five different characters by which Engler justified the family Sparganiaceae are wrong or, in two cases, without any significance ... The few remaining but very obvious differences may be explained to a large extend [sic ] by an adaptation of Typha to anemochory [wind-dispersal of propagules]...."
The phylogenetic relationships of the Typhales with other families remain controversial, and it seems best to treat the taxon as an isolated order of uncertain relationships pending further research. Various authors have placed the Typhales close to or within the Pandanales, Arales, Poales , Liliales, Pontederiales , or Philydrales or in the Commeliniflorae generally close to the Cyperales and Juncales (J. W. Thieret and J. O. Luken 1996) .
of fresh to slightly brackish
wetlands, often emergent. Rhizomes at base
, mostly horizontal, unbranched, to 70 cm ´ 5--40 mm, starchy, firm, scaly
. Erect shoots vegetative
or flowering, single at rhizome apices or arising from shoot bases, thus clustered, unbranched, to 4 m
; stems often somewhat compressed
, intergrading proximally with scale leaves, to 15 on each flowering shoot; blade
twisted into loose
helix, mostly slightly oblanceolate
, thickly concave-convex or plano-convex
proximally to thinly plane
distally (abaxially keeled
in the Old World Typha. eleiphantina Roxburgh) ; mucilage-secreting glands
surface of sheath
and sometimes proximally on blade, colorless to brown, roughly rectangular. Inflorescences: staminate
shorter than or exceeding flowers; pistillate
spikes usually persisting into winter, when dry fruiting flowers often falling in masses; pistillate bracteoles absent or numerous, colorless except for brown apical blade at spike surface, filiform
, blade club-shaped to lanceoloid. Staminate flowers
dehiscing longitudinally, 4-sporangiate. Pistillate flowers: pistil hairs
colorless and wholly filiform, or apically enlarged and brown, exceeded by stigmas; carpodia obovoid
, bearing rudimentary
The extensive literature on Typha has been reviewed (C. M. Finlayson et al. 1983; J. B . Grace and J. S. Harrison 1986; J. W. Thieret and J. O. Luken 1996). A modern taxonomic revision is much needed, especially for eastern Asia, adjacent islands, and South America (S. G. Smith 1987) ; the latest worldwide monograph is that by E. M. Kronfeld (1889). The center of diversity (ca. 6 species) is central Eurasia .
Typha is ecologically important in many fresh to slightly brackish wetlands, often emergent in up to 1.5 m of water. Each spike may produce hundreds of thousands seeds, which are efficiently wind-dispersed and germinate on bare wet soils or under very shallow water. The seedlings rapidly form clones by means of rhizomes in the first season , flower the second season (R. R. Yeo 1964), and often form very large, persistent, often monospecific stands. Some species produce large amounts of biomass , comparable to the most productive agricultural crops . The three species are ecotypically well differentiated in North America (S. J. McNaughton 1966). Some mechanisms of competition between Typha species were studied by J. B. Grace and R. G. Wetzel (1982) and J. B. Grace (1988) (cf. Thieret and Luken 1996;, J. B. Grace and J. S. Harrison 1986).
Common teratological forms are longitudinally split pistillate spikes (caused by parasitic insects), pistillate spikes interrupted by zones of naked axis, and partially merged pistillate and staminate spikes.
Typha species are or have been utilized in numerous ways worldwide (C. M. Finlayson et al. 1983; J. B. Grace and J. S. Harrison 1986; J. F. Morton 1975; V. Ramey 1981; J. W. Thieret and J. O. Luken 1996). Leaves are used for dwellings (walls, roof thatch, floor coverings) ; for mats, baskets, and other handicraft objects; for caning chairs; and for caulking barrels , boats , and houses. "Fluff" from fruiting spikes is used for tinder and insulation; for dressing burns ; and for stuffing pillows , quilts, mattresses, life preservers, toys, and diapers. Young shoot bases, young rhizomes, starch from mature rhizomes, staminate flowers before anthesis , and pollen are all minor sources of food. Typha is valuable as habitat and food for many kinds of wildlife. It is useful for removal of various kinds of pollutants; a potential source of fiber for paper and other products; and a potential source of energy, e.g. , for alcohol manufacture. The seeds comprise about 18--20% of an edible oil (69% linolenic acid). Several species are cultivated as ornamentals . The North American species are often sold commercially and planted for wildlife habitat and in wetland restoration .
The larger Typha species and T. ´glauca can be serious weeds in managed aquatic systems worldwide, where they can invade canals, ditches, reservoirs , cultivated fields , and farm ponds ; they can be a nuisance in recreational lakes ; and they can reduce biodiversity and displace species more desirable for certain kinds of wildlife (J. B. Grace and J. S. Harrison 1986; J. F. Morton 1975; J. W. Thieret and J. O. Luken 1996).
Users of this treatment should be aware of the following: 1) Leaves shrink considerably in width as they dry. 2) Leaf mucilage glands are usually colorless and difficult to see in fresh leaves of all three species early in the season and in Typha latifolia at all stages. They are brown and clearly evident to the unaided eye in mid- to late-season fresh or dried T. angustifolia and T. domingensis and are easily stained (with, e.g., safranin). Brown necrotic spots, apparently caused by feeding arthropods , may superficially resemble mucilage glands. 3) Spikes are commonly poorly developed as a result of drought or other causes; fruiting spike thicknesses given herein are for normal spikes. 4) Except for the presence of mucilage glands on the leaf blades, unique to T. domingensis and its hybrids, the microscopic flower and bracteole structures are generally essential for accurate identification of Typha species and hybrids. This is in part because of changes in the inflorescences during development and in part because of phenotypic plasticity , especially of leaf blade widths. It is often necessary to use forceps to pull a few pistillate flowers out of the spike and observe them with a dissecting microscope at 20´ X to 30´ X. 5) Pollen is often infested with fungi, which attach the grains together and simulate genetically aborted grains, and the grains of T. angustifolia and T. domingensis often adhere in small groups for no obvious reason.
Hybrids: Putative hybrids among the three North American species have been experimentally produced and occur in most regions of sympatry and have been experimentally produced (S. G. Smith 1967, 1987). Local studies were provided (J. R. Dugle and T. P. Copps 1972; T. M. Tompkins and J. Taylor 1983). Protogyny and slight differences in flowering dates favor interspecific pollination. Hybrid seedlings are likely wherever two species form mixed stands and bare wet soil is available for seed germination and seedling establishment. 1) T. latifolia ´ T. angustifolia (=T. ´glauca Godr., pro sp.), often called "hybrid cattail," is abundant throughout most of the region of sympatry of the parents except along the southeast coast, where it is uncommon. Almost all plants are putative ff1s which are intermediate between the parental species in all morphologic characters studied and are highly sterile , producing very few or no seeds or viable pollen grains . Fertile or sterile intermediates between T. ´glauca and T. angustifolia occasionally occur, however. In spite of its sterility, T. ´glauca is remarkably successful ecologically. It often spreads by means of rhizomes to form often very large clones and out-competes the parental species, especially in eutrophic , disturbed habitats with unstable water levels (S. W. Harris and W. H. Marshall 1963; S. G. Smith 1987). Unfortunately it has been treated as a species by many authors (e.g., N. Hotchkiss and H. L. Dozier 1949). 2) Typha domingensis ´ T. latifolia (= T. ´provincialis A. Camus, T. bethulona Costa) is known only from very few collections in Arkansas, California, Florida, Missouri, Nebraska, and North Carolina. All of these are highly sterile putative F1s except for one putative F2 , in which the characteristics of the parental species are recombined, from southern California. 3) Typha angustifolia ´ T. domingensis is known from scattered specimens in Arkansas, California, Kansas, Kentucky, Missouri, and Nebraska. It is not known from the southeast coast, perhaps because of differences between the species in flowering dates. Most plants are highly fertile, and some may be F2 or later generation hybrids. 4) Putative T. angustifolia ´ T. domingensis ´ T. latifolia trihybrids are locally common in California and rare in south-central United States. Introgression between the interfertile T. angustifolia and T. domingensis is presumably probably locally common in the south-central U.S. and north-central California, while introgression between T. latifolia and the other two species is probably very uncommon because of hybrid sterility. Published research presumably demonstrating introgression (e.g., N.C. Fassett and B. M. Calhoun 1952) is faulty (S. G. Smith 1967, 1987). The tetraploid T. orientalis of the Pacific Basin may be of hybrid origin (B. G. Briggs and L. A. S. Johnson 1968; S. G. Smith 1967, 1987).
- Whittaker & Margulis,1978
- Haeckel, 1866
- Cavalier-Smith, 1981
- Sinnott, 1935 ex Cavalier-Smith, 1998
- Vascular Plants
- Kenrick & Crane, 1997
- Brongniart, 1843
- (Bartl., 1830) Takhtajan, 1997
- (Dumortier, 1829) Thorne Ex Reveal, 1992
- Small, 1903
- Durande, 1782, nom. cons.
- Cat-tail Family
- C. Linnaeus, 1753
- Cat-tail, cat-o'-nine-tails, cat-tail flag, bulrush, reed-mace, quenouille, massette, canne, tule, queue de rat [Greek, perhaps from typhein, to smoke or to emit smoke, in allusion either to the use of the spikes for maintaining smoky fires or to the smok
- Specific epithet:
- Sond. & W.D.H.Koch
- Botanical name: - Typha shuttleworthii Sond. & W.D.H.Koch
- Specific epithet: shuttleworthii - Sond. & W.D.H.Koch
- Genus: Typha () - C. Linnaeus, 1753 - Cat-tail, cat-o'-nine-tails, cat-tail flag, bulrush, reed-mace, quenouille, massette, canne, tule, queue de rat [Greek, perhaps from typhein, to smoke or to emit smoke, in allusion either to the use of the spikes for maintaining smoky fires or to the smok
- Family: Typhaceae () - Durande, 1782, nom. cons. - Cat-tail Family
- Order: Poales () - Small, 1903
- Superorder: Typhanae () - (Dumortier, 1829) Thorne Ex Reveal, 1992
- Subclass: Aridae () - (Bartl., 1830) Takhtajan, 1997
- Class: Spermatopsida () - Brongniart, 1843
- Infraphylum: Radiatopses () - Kenrick & Crane, 1997
- Subphylum: Euphyllophytina ()
- Phylum: Tracheophyta () - Sinnott, 1935 ex Cavalier-Smith, 1998 - Vascular Plants
- Subkingdom: Viridaeplantae () - Cavalier-Smith, 1981
- Kingdom: Plantae () - Haeckel, 1866 - Plants
Publishing author : Sond. & W.D.H.Koch Publication : Synopsis Florae Germanicae et Helveticae ed. 2 1845 (17-20 Sep. 1845)
Members of the genus Typha
ZipcodeZoo has pages for 15 species, subspecies, varieties, forms, and cultivars in this genus:
T. angustifolia (Lesser Bulrush) · T. angustifolia var. brownii (Narrowleaf Cattail) · T. australis (Cumbungi (Aboriginal - Aust)) · T. capensis (Common Bullrush (South Africa)) · T. domingensis (Narrow-Leaf Cumbungi) · T. elephantina (Elephant´s Grass) · T. glauca (White Cattail) · T. latifolia (Broadleaf Cattail) · T. latifolia var. Variegata (Variegated Cat Tail) · T. laxmannii (Graceful Cattail) · T. minima (Dwarf Bulrush) · T. muelleri (Edible-Rooted Cat´s Tail) · T. orientalis (Broadleaf Cumbungi) · T. shuttleworthii (Shuttleworth´s Cattail) · T. x glauca (Hybrid Cattail)
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- Briggs, B. G. and L. A. S. Johnson. 1968. The status and relationships of the Australian species of Typha. Contr. New South Wales National. Herbarium. 4: (2): 57--78.
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- Global Biodiversity Information Facility. Accessed March 17, 2008. http://www.gbif.org Mediated distribution data from 3 providers.
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Accessed through GBIF Data Portal March 17, 2008:
- Biologiezentrum der Oberoesterreichischen Landesmuseen: Biologiezentrum Linz
- European Environment Agency: EUNIS
- Natural History Museum, Vienna - Herbarium W: Herbarium W
- Tiroler Landesmuseum Ferdinandeum
- Biodiversity Heritage Library NamebankID: 8979984
- Catalogue of Life Accepted Name Code: Kew-271061
- Global Biodiversity Information Facility Taxonkey: 14659874
- Globally Unique Identifier: urn:lsid:ipni.org:names:836904-1
- International Plant Names Index (IPNI) ID: 836903-1
- Zipcode Zoo Species Identifier: 899076