Water Starwort

Callitriche spp.

Quick Facts

  • Species

    Native

  • Habitat

    Grows in quiet, non-tidal fresh waters such as streams, lakes and ditches, and is occasionally found in small, shallow tidal freshwater creeks and rivers. Egg-shaped leaves float in clusters on the water’s surface.

  • Range

    Found in tidal and non-tidal fresh waters throughout the Chesapeake Bay watershed.

  • Status

    Stable

Water starwort is a bay grass with bright green, egg-shaped leaves that float on the surface of the water. It grows in quiet fresh waters throughout the Chesapeake Bay watershed.

Appearance

Water starwort has bright green, oval- or egg-shaped leaves on the upper part of its stem and straight leaves on the lower, submerged part of its stem. Two leaves grow at each joint on the stem.

Predators

Ducks feed on the leaves and seeds.

Reproduction and Life Cycle

Water starwort reproduces both sexually and asexually. It flowers from July to September, forming numerous seeds.

Did You Know?

  • Water starwort provides habitat for fish and aquatic insects.
  • There are four species of water starwort that grow in North America, but they are so similar that you need a microscope to distinguish them.

Sources and Additional Information

Quick Facts

  • Species

    Native

  • Habitat

    Grows in quiet, non-tidal fresh waters such as streams, lakes and ditches, and is occasionally found in small, shallow tidal freshwater creeks and rivers. Egg-shaped leaves float in clusters on the water’s surface.

  • Range

    Found in tidal and non-tidal fresh waters throughout the Chesapeake Bay watershed.

  • Status

    Stable