Aponogeton L.f.
  • Suppl. Pl.: 32 (1782) 

Notes: Distribution: Trop. & S. Africa to N. Australia

General Description

Small to medium-sized perennial herbs growing in seasonally wet soil or submerged in temporary pools or similar habitats, rarely in permanent water; leaf-blades and flowers often floating on the surface of the water. Tuber globular to oval or more irregular in shape, usually grey to brown with very numerous roots from upper part Leaves usually with a long petiole and a distinct blade with a few parallel primary veins and numerous transverse secondary veins, but in some species, e.g. A. vallisnerioides, the leaf-blade is linear. Inflorescence with spirally or unilaterally arranged flowers in a loose or dense simple or bifid spike; spathe present, but usually very early caducous. Flowers with white, yellow, mauve or bluish-violet petal-like appendages (tepals), rarely with tepals lacking. Stamens with yellowish or brown anthers often early turning blackish; connnective sometimes protruding into a conical appendage; pollen-grains monosulcate, borne in monads. Ovaries green, blue or lilac. Follicles bottle-shaped with a distinct beak, containing 1–12 rounded to fusiform seeds, which are often prominendy longitudinally ribbed.


Suppl. Pl.: 32 (1781); Engl. in E. & P. Pf. II. 1: 218 (1889); K. Krause in E.P. IV. 13: 9 (1906); H. Bruggen in B.J.B.B. 43: 193 (1973) & Bibl. Bot. 33, 137: 1 (1985), nom. conserv.

Distribution Map

  • Native distribution
  • Introduced distribution
Found in
  • Africa East Tropical Africa Kenya
  • Tanzania
  • Uganda
  • Northeast Tropical Africa Chad
  • Djibouti
  • Eritrea
  • Ethiopia
  • Somalia
  • Sudan
  • South Tropical Africa Angola
  • Malawi
  • Mozambique
  • Zambia
  • Zimbabwe
  • Southern Africa Botswana
  • Cape Provinces
  • Caprivi Strip
  • Free State
  • KwaZulu-Natal
  • Lesotho
  • Namibia
  • Northern Provinces
  • Swaziland
  • West Tropical Africa Burkina
  • Ghana
  • Guinea-Bissau
  • Ivory Coast
  • Mali
  • Mauritania
  • Niger
  • Nigeria
  • Senegal
  • Sierra Leone
  • West-Central Tropical Africa Cameroon
  • Central African Republic
  • Congo
  • Rwanda
  • Zaire
  • Western Indian Ocean Comoros
  • Madagascar
  • Asia-Temperate China China South-Central
  • China Southeast
  • Hainan
  • Eastern Asia Taiwan
  • Asia-Tropical Indian Subcontinent Assam
  • Bangladesh
  • East Himalaya
  • India
  • Nepal (Doubtful)
  • Sri Lanka
  • West Himalaya (Doubtful)
  • Indo-China Cambodia
  • Laos
  • Myanmar
  • Thailand
  • Vietnam
  • Malesia Borneo
  • Malaya
  • Sulawesi
  • Papuasia New Guinea
  • Australasia Australia New South Wales
  • Northern Territory
  • Queensland
  • Western Australia
Introduced into
  • Africa Western Indian Ocean Mauritius
  • Australasia Australia Victoria
  • New Zealand New Zealand North
  • New Zealand South
  • Europe Northern Europe Great Britain
  • Southwestern Europe France
  • Northern America Southwestern U.S.A. California

Included Species


  • 1 Govaerts, R. (1995). World Checklist of Seed Plants 1(1, 2): 1-483, 1-529. MIM, Deurne.
  • 2 K.A. Lye (Agricultural University of Norway) (1989) Aponogetonaceae. Flora of Tropical East Africa 0 (0)

 Information From

Flora of Tropical East Africa
Flora of Tropical East Africa. Published on the Internet; http://apps.kew.org/efloras/
WCS higher taxonomy
  • B All Rights Reserved
World Checklist of Selected Plant Families
WCSP 2014. 'World Checklist of Selected Plant Families. Facilitated by the Royal Botanic Gardens, Kew. Published on the Internet; http://apps.kew.org/wcsp/ Retrieved 2011 onwards
  • C See http://kew.org/about-kew/website-information/legal-notices/index.htm You may use data on these Terms and Conditions and on further condition that: The data is not used for commercial purposes; You may copy and retain data solely for scholarly, educational or research purposes; You may not publish our data, except for small extracts provided for illustrative purposes and duly acknowledged; You acknowledge the source of the data by the words "With the permission of the Trustees of the Royal Botanic Gardens, Kew" in a position which is reasonably prominent in view of your use of the data; Any other use of data or any other content from this website may only be made with our prior written agreement.