Habit and leaf form. Aquatic herbs. Perennial; with a basal aggregation of leaves, or with neither basal nor terminal aggregations of leaves; rhizomatous. Hydrophytic to helophytic; rooted. Leaves emergent. Leaves alternate; distichous; triangular in section or flat; leathery; sessile; sheathing; simple. Lamina entire; linear; parallel-veined; without cross-venules. Leaves with a persistent basal meristem, and basipetal development (?).
General anatomy. Plants with silica bodies, or without silica bodies.
Leaf anatomy. Epidermis containing silica bodies, or without silica bodies. Stomata present; paracytic. Guard-cells not ‘grass type’.
The mesophyll containing mucilage cells (with raphides), or not containing mucilage cells; containing calcium oxalate crystals. The mesophyll crystals raphides, or druses, or solitary-prismatic (or styloids). Minor leaf veins without phloem transfer cells. Vessels present; end-walls scalariform.
Stem anatomy. Secondary thickening absent. Xylem with vessels. Vessel end-walls scalariform. Sieve-tube plastids P-type; type II.
Root anatomy. Root xylem with vessels; vessel end-walls scalariform.
Reproductive type, pollination. Plants monoecious. Female flowers without staminodes. Gynoecium of male flowers absent. Floral nectaries absent (? — no septal nectaries). Pollination anemophilous.
Inflorescence, floral, fruit and seed morphology. Flowers densely aggregated in ‘inflorescences’; compound, dense in spikes. Inflorescences scapiflorous; terminal; a dense compound spike, with condensed secondary/tertiary branches formed from closely approximated annular meristems, the female flowers in the lower part, the males above. Flowers small. Floral receptacle developing a gynophore (sometimes, in the female flowers, to which the perianth-hairs may be adnate), or with neither androphore nor gynophore. Perigone tube absent. Hypogynous disk absent.
Perianth vestigial (in the form of simple, lobed or forked hairs); 1–10(–20) (? — commonly 3 in the males, 1–4 in the females); free, or joined (somewhat adnate to the slender, elongated axis); 1–5 whorled (irregular).
Androecium (1–)3(–5). Androecial members free of the perianth; coherent (by the filaments); 1 adelphous (the filaments joined basally for variable distances). Androecium exclusively of fertile stamens. Stamens (1–)3(–5). Anthers basifixed; non-versatile; dehiscing via longitudinal slits; extrorse (when recordable); tetrasporangiate; appendaged (via apical projection of the connective). Endothecium developing fibrous thickenings. Anther epidermis persistent. Microsporogenesis successive. The initial microspore tetrads tetrahedral, or isobilateral. Anther wall initially with one middle layer. Tapetum glandular. Pollen shed as single grains (usually), or shed in aggregates; rarely in tetrads. Pollen grains aperturate; 1 aperturate; ulcerate (the aperture diffusely delimited); 2-celled.
Gynoecium 1 carpelled. The pistil 1 celled. Gynoecium monomerous; of one carpel; superior. Carpel stylate; apically stigmatic; 1 ovuled. Placentation apical. Stigmas dry type; non-papillate; Group II type. Ovules pendulous; non-arillate; anatropous; bitegmic; crassinucellate. Outer integument not contributing to the micropyle. Embryo-sac development Polygonum-type. Polar nuclei fusing prior to fertilization. Antipodal cells formed; 3; not proliferating; ephemeral. Synergids pear-shaped. Endosperm formation helobial. Embryogeny asterad.
Fruit non-fleshy. The fruiting carpel dehiscent; a follicle (but tiny and achene-like before dehiscence). Dispersal unit with the perianth-hairs forming a parachute. Dispersal by wind. Fruit 1 seeded. Seeds endospermic. Endosperm oily. Seeds with starch. Cotyledons 1. Embryo achlorophyllous (1/2); straight. Testa without phytomelan.
Seedling. Hypocotyl internode absent. Seedling collar not conspicuous. Cotyledon hyperphyll elongated; assimilatory; more or less circular in t.s. Coleoptile absent. Seedling cataphylls absent. First leaf dorsiventral. Primary root ephemeral.
Physiology, biochemistry. Cyanogenic, or not cyanogenic. Alkaloids present, or absent. Proanthocyanidins present; cyanidin. Flavonols present; kaempferol and quercetin. Ellagic acid absent. Arbutin absent. Saponins/sapogenins absent. C3. C3 physiology recorded directly in Typha. Anatomy non-C4 type (Typha).
Geography, cytology. Temperate to tropical. Widespread, but absent from Madagascar, Malaysia, and the warm Americas. X = 15.
Taxonomy. Subclass Monocotyledonae. Dahlgren et al. Superorder Bromeliiflorae; Typhales. APG 3 core angiosperms; Superorder Lilianae; commelinid Monocot; Order Amborellales.
Species 10. Genera 1; Typha.
Economic uses, etc. The leaves used in weaving chair bottoms and mats.
• Technical details: Typha.
• Typha angustifolia: Eng. Bot. 1386 (1869).
• Typha latifolia (B. Ent.).
• Typha latifolia: Eng. Bot. 1385 (1869).