Hippuris vulgaris


Not Present in Florida

Species Overview

Native to: Eurasia and North America

Mare's tail is a circumpolar species present in North America and in northern Eurasia, found in the slow moving or stagnant waters of rivers, lakes, ditches and marshes, and on receding shores in sandy, gravelly or mucky soil.

Species Characteristics

Family: Hippuridaceae

Habit: Aquatic herbaceous perennial

Leaves: Emersed leaves are lance-linear, up to 1 inch long, fairly stiff, whorled around the stem in groups of 8 to 12, toothless, hairless, pointed at the tip, stalkless, usually widely spreading and often slightly curved. Submersed leaves are similar in shape but are limp, much longer, typically with 12 to 16 in a whorl and the whorls densely crowded on the stem.

Flowers: Whorls of tiny flowers at the leaf nodes all along the emersed part of the stem, with a single flower in each leaf axil. Flowers are petal-less, green to purplish, oval, about 1 mm long, either male with a single purplish stamen, female with a single thread-like style, or perfect with both a style and a stamen.

Fruit/ Seeds: Fruit is a 1-seeded oval capsule 1.5 to 3 mm long. Seeds are oval-elliptic and smooth.

Distribution in Florida: Not present



Learn more about this species

Flora of North America

Lady Bird Johnson Wildflower Center Plant Database

Minnesota Wildflowers

USDA Plant Database

Invasive Species Compendium