Pontederia cordata pickerelweed Pontederiaceae POCO; Bx, pb, sf; NY, ct (planted); Q, wl; R, ro;

 

Pontederia cordata.Copyright © 2014 Donald Cameron.New England Wild Flower Society.gobotany.newenglandwild.org

Pontederia cordata.Copyright © 2014 Donald Cameron.New England Wild Flower Society.gobotany.newenglandwild.org (Accessed 11/2014).

Pontederia cordata is a perennial monocotyledon aquatic herb to 1 m tall, colonial from a rhizome; base of leaf stalk sheathing stem. 

Leaves alternate, stalk elongate, blade heart-shaped to lance-shaped to 18 cm long, fleshy, tip rounded or blunt, basal lobes rounded, veins numerous, parallel to midrib, converging at tip, margin smooth. 

Flowers blue, to about 1.7 cm long, bilaterally symmetrical, tubular petal lobes 2-lipped, lower lip 3-lobed, 3 lobes of upper lip partly fused, the central lobe broad, marked with yellow; inflorescence a dense spike 5-15 cm long, , emerging from a short spath 3-6 cm long. Young flowers often glandular hairy; blooming and fruiting July-Sept. 

Fruit dry, 1-seeded, beaked, enclosed in enlarged flower base. Seeds eaten by some waterfowl and muskrats, muscrats also eat plants. 

Wetland status: OBL. 

Frequency in NYC: Infrequent. 

Origin: Native. 

Habitat: In shallow water (to 1 m deep), pond edges, open marshes. Sometimes planted in wetland restorations with open waterbodies. Tolerates brackish water to 3 ppt salinity, partial shade, soil pH 6-8.