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Spiny Naiad - Najas marina
Family: Najadaceae

THIS PAGE IS UNDER CONSTRUCTION.

Description

Najas marina is submersed with brittle stems up to about 0.5 m long that are often branched toward the upward portion of the plant. The internodes of the stem usually have conspicuous, brownish, prickly teeth. The leaves are opposite or sometimes in whorls of three, 0.5 to 4.0 cm long, and have triangular teeth along the leaf margins and prickles along the midrib on the underside of the leaf. Plants are dioecious with the male and female flowers borne on separate individuals. The flowers are solitary in the leaf axils. The female flowers produce ovoid seeds 2.0 to 4.5 mm long that have 3 to 4-angled areolae that are irregularly arranged.

Interesting facts

Spiny naiad is found in brackish or highly alkaline ponds, lakes, and coastal and inland marshes. Plants are reported to reproduce by seed and fragmentation (Tarver et al. 1986). Studies by Vierssen (1982) have shown seed germination of N. marina to be best in decomposing organic matter, at 24° C under dark conditions. Agami and Waisel (1986) found the germination of N. marina to be increased after passing through the digestive tract of mallard ducks and postulate that ducks may be a major factor in long range dispersal of N. marina.

Najas marina can sometimes interfere with boating and fishing. However, the plant is considered to be an excellent waterfowl food (Tarver et al. 1986).

Links to more information


Website, video, and graphics by Rob Nelson
For more information on this plant or management please contact US Army Corp of Engineers

 

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