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Variable-Leaf Milfoil - Myriophyllum heterophyllum
Family: Haloragaceae

THIS PAGE IS UNDER CONSTRUCTION.

Description

Variable-leaf milfoil is a rooted perennial and submersed except for the flowering spikes that are emersed and from 5 to 25 cm long. The submersed stems are stout (up to 8 mm in diameter), reddish, often with numerous branches. Submersed leaves are 4 to 6, whorled, up to about 6 cm long with 6 to 14 pairs of narrow segments. The emersed flowering spikes have bright green, leaf-like bracts that are in whorls of 4 to 6 with toothed to entire margins. The bracts are 4 to 12 mm long and more than twice the length of the small flowers that are borne in the axils of the leaf-like bracts. The fruit is hard, four-lobed, 1 to 1.5 mm long, and splitting into four distinct segments (mericarps).

Interesting facts

Variable-leaf milfoil is found in ponds, lakes, streams, ditches and spring-fed swamps and sloughs. Reproduction is by seed and fragmentation. Regrowth occurs from rhizomes rooted in the hydrosoil. Plants stranded on mud and dewatered shorelines often develop numerous, erect spikes that are readily visible due to the bright green leaf-like bracts. Variable-leaf milfoil also is occasionally sold as an aquarium plant (Tarver et al. 1986).

Myriophyllum heterophyllum can be an aggressive plant in some situations and may interfere with water movement, boating, swimming, fishing and other recreational activities (Tarver et al. 1986, Crow and Hellquist 1983).

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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