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Montana Field Guides

Common Water-milfoil - Myriophyllum sibiricum
Other Names:  Northern Water-milfoil

Native Species

Global Rank: G5
State Rank: SNR

Agency Status
MNPS Threat Rank:
C-value: 3

External Links

General Description
Stems whitish when dry, branched. Leaves 4-whorled, 1–4 cm long, divided into 10 to 24 filiform segments. Bracts 1–3 mm long ca. as long as the fruits. Female flowers with a vestigial calyx and corolla; bracts dentate, smaller than the flowers. Male flowers with small, pink petals; bracts narrowly ovate, entire, smaller than the flowers; stamens 8. Mericarps 2–3 mm long (Lesica 2012. Manual of Montana Vascular Plants. BRIT Press. Fort Worth, TX).

Diagnostic Characteristics
Rare terrestrially, rarely branching near the surface, stem not thickened below the inflorescence, bracts shorter than the flowers or fruit, carpels in fruit smooth or finely tubercled.

Species Range

Range Comments
AK to NL south to CA, AZ, TX, IL, WV; Europe (Lesica 2012. Manual of Montana Vascular Plants. BRIT Press. Fort Worth, TX).

Observations in Montana Natural Heritage Program Database
Number of Observations: 2238

(Click on the following maps and charts to see full sized version) Map Help and Descriptions
Relative Density



(Observations spanning multiple months or years are excluded from time charts)

Shallow to rather deep water of ponds, lakes; plains, valleys, montane (Lesica 2012. Manual of Montana Vascular Plants. BRIT Press. Fort Worth, TX).

  • Additional ReferencesLegend:   View Online Publication
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    • Aiken, S.G. 1981. A Conspectus of Myriophyllum (Haloragaceae) in North America. Brittonia 33 (1): 57-69. A81AIK01PAUS.
    • Britton, N. L. and A. B. Brown. 1913. An Illustrated Flora of the Northern United States, Canada, and the British Possessions. 2nd Edition in 3 Volumes. New York, NY: Charles Scribner's Sons. B13BRI01PAUS.
    • Fassett, Norman C. 1940. A Manual of Aquatic Plants, 1st ed. New York: McGraw-Hill. B57FAS01PAUS.
    • Fernald, M. L. 1950. Gray's manual of botany. Eighth edition. A handbook of the flowering plants and ferns of the central and northeastern United States and Adjacent Canada. American Book Co., New York.
    • Fernald, M.L. 1919. Two New Myriophyllums and a Species New to the United States. Rhodora 21:120-124. A19FER02PAUS.
    • Gleason, H. A., and A. Cronquist. 1991. Manual of vascular plants of northeastern United States and adjacent Canada. New York Botanical Garden, Bronx, NY. 910 pp.
    • Godfrey, R.K. Wooten, J.W. 1970. Aquatic and Wetland Plants of Southeastern United States. University of Georgia Press, Athens, GA. USA. B70GOD01PAUS
    • Lesica, P., M. T. Lavin, and P. F. Stickney. 2012. Manual of Montana Vascular Plants. Fort Worth, TX: BRIT Press. viii + 771 p.
    • Patton, B.C. Jr. 1954. The Status of Some American Species of Myriophyllum as Revealed by the Discovery of Intergrade Material Between M. exalbescens Fern. and M. spicatum L. in New Jersey. Rhodora 56: 213-225. A54PAT01PAUS.
    • Weishaupt, C.G. 1971. Vascular Plants of Ohio, Third Ed. Kendall/Hunt Publishing Co. Dubuque, Iowa. B71WEI01PAUS
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Citation for data on this website:
Common Water-milfoil — Myriophyllum sibiricum.  Montana Field Guide.  .  Retrieved on , from