Page authors: Don Knoke, David Giblin
Hippuris vulgaris
common mare's-tail

Distribution: Widely distributed on both sides of the Cascades in Washington; Alaska to south California and New Mexico, east through southern Canada and the northern states to Maine.

Habitat: Streams, ponds and shallow lakes, generally at least partially emerged.

Flowers: June-August

Origin: Native

Conservation Status: Not of concern


Glabrous, aquatic perennials with creeping rhizomes, the erect branches partly emersed, 1.5-2.5 mm. thick and 5-30 cm. long, usually simple, but frequently with short branches from the lower nodes.


Leaves linear, entire, 6-12 per whorl, 1-2 mm. broad and 10-35 mm. long.


Flowers mostly perfect, sessile and solitary in the leaf axils; perianth none; stamen 1; pistil 1-celled; style slender, stigmatic the entire length, lying in the groove between the lobes of the large anther.


Fruit nut-like, 1-seeded.

Accepted Name:
Hippuris vulgaris L.
Publication: Sp. Pl. 1: 4. 1753.

Synonyms & Misapplications:
(none provided)
Additional Resources:

PNW Herbaria: Specimen records of Hippuris vulgaris in the Consortium of Pacific Northwest Herbaria database.

WA Flora Checklist: Hippuris vulgaris checklist entry.

E-Flora BC: Hippuris vulgaris atlas page.

CalPhotos: Hippuris vulgaris photos.

USDA Plants: Hippuris vulgaris information.

31 photographs:
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