Plants. Photo by eyeweed, near Glen Oak, NSW

Female flower. Photo by eyeweed, near Glen Oak, NSW

Male flowers free floating. Photo by eyeweed, near Glen Oak, NSW

Common Name

Ribbonweed, Eelweed, Eel-grass




Submerged perennial aquatic forb. Leaves basal, to 6m long, 10-35mm wide, margins toothed near the apex. Usually covered in brown slime and silt. Male and female flowers on separate plants. Male flowers small (less than 3mm across). Female flowers often small (less than 3mm across), pink or white inside, with 3 scarsely visible petals. Male flowers many within membranous sheaths near the base of the plant, the sheath opening to release the flowers, which float to the surface. Female flowers solitary within membranous sheaths, at the ends of spirally coiled stalks.

Description and photo (as Valisneria gigantea or Eelgrass) in G.M. Cunningham, WE Mulham, PL Milthorpe and J H Leigh (1981 and later printings) Plants of Western New South Wales page 46

PlantNET description: