Sparganium

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Sparganium

 

(bur reeds), a genus of perennial aquatic or marsh plants of the family Sparganiaceae. The flowers are unisexual and cluster in thick heads. The perianth is formed by three to six scaly leaflets. The fruit is dry and has a porous pericarp. There are about 20 species in the temperate and subarctic regions of the northern hemisphere, as well as in Australia and New Zealand. In the USSR there are about ten species, the most common of which are S. erectum and the simple bur reed (S. simplex). Bur reeds serve as food for waterfowl and aquatic fur-bearing animals like the coypu and the muskrat. Some species are valued in apiculture as beebread plants.