Sagittaria trifolia L., Sp. Pl. 993 1753. (Syn: Sagittaria chinensis Sims; Sagittaria doniana Sweet; Sagittaria edulis Schltdl.; Sagittaria hastata D.Don [Illegitimate]; Sagittaria hirundinacea Blume; Sagittaria japonica H.Vilm.; Sagittaria leucopetala (Miq.) Bergmans; Sagittaria macrophylla Bunge [Illegitimate]; Sagittaria obtusa Thunb. [Illegitimate]; Sagittaria sagittata Thunb.; Sagittaria sagittifolia var. alismifolia Makino; Sagittaria sagittifolia var. angustifolia Siebold, nom.nud.; Sagittaria sagittifolia f. coerulea Makino; Sagittaria sagittifolia var. diversifolia M.Michel; Sagittaria sagittifolia var. edulis (Schltdl.) Siebold ex Miq.; Sagittaria sagittifolia subsp. leucopetala (Miq.) Hartog; Sagittaria sagittifolia var. leucopetala Miq.; Sagittaria sagittifolia f. longiloba (Turcz.) Regel; Sagittaria sagittifolia var. longiloba Turcz.; Sagittaria sagittifolia f. sinensis (Sims) Makino; Sagittaria sagittifolia var. sinensis (Sims) Makino; Sagittaria sagittifolia f. subaequiloba Regel; Sagittaria sinensis Sims; Sagittaria trifolia f. albida Makino; Sagittaria trifolia f. albida Makino; Sagittaria trifolia var. angustifolia Kitag.; Sagittaria trifolia f. caerulea Makino; Sagittaria trifolia var. edulis (Schltdl.) Ohwi ex W.Lee; Sagittaria trifolia f. heterophylla Makino; Sagittaria trifolia subsp. leucopetala (Miq.) Q.F.Wang; Sagittaria trifolia var. leucopetala Miq.; Sagittaria trifolia var. longiloba (Turcz.) Kitag.; Sagittaria trifolia f. longiloba (Turcz.) Makino; Sagittaria trifolia var. retusa J.K.Chen, X.Z.Sun & H.Q.Wang; Sagittaria trifolia var. sinensis (Sims) Makino; Sagittaria trifolia f. subhastata Makino; Sagittaria trifolia f. suitensis Makino; Sagittaria trifolia f. tenuissima Hand.-Mazz.; Sagittaria trifolia var. typica);

Aquatic, glabrous herb with thick stolons bearing tubers at tip. Leaves mostly emerged, upright, sagittate or somewhat hastate, blade ovate or linear-lanceolate and acute; basal lobes triangular or linear-lanceolate, often longer than the blade, sharply acute. Petiole 60-75 cm long, triangular. Inflorescence an unbranched scapose raceme, 30-50 cm long. Flowers in 2-6 whorls of (2-) 3 (-5) flowers each, unisexual, 1-2 cm across, white. Pedicels 8-15 mm long, short in females; bracts triangular-ovate, acute-acuminate. Sepals elliptic, somewhat keeled, margins broadly membranous, reflexed in fruit. Petals broadly elliptic-suborbicular, white, without basal purple spot. Stamens c. 20, filaments lanceolate, 1.5-2 mm long; anthers yellow, oblong, as long as the filaments. Head of achenes subglobose, c. 1 cm across; achenes triangularly obovate, with laterally bent beak. c. 2-3 mm long, wings subcrenate to entire. 

Flowering and fruiting: March-April
Swampy areas and paddy fields
India, Europe, North Asia and North America
(Attributions- Dr. N Sasidharan (Dr. B P Pal Fellow), Kerala Forest Research Institute, Peechi from India Biodiversity Portal)

Sagittaria trifolia L. from Assam:
Images of the Sagittaria trifolia L. (Alismataceae).
Location : Dharapur, Dist. Kamrup(Metro), Assam
Time of Collection : 04/03/2009
Habitat : Margin of the waterbody
Habit : Herb

Hooghly : Sagittaria sp. : 8 posts by 3 authors. Attachments (3).
This is a smaller species, from the same place, of the same family I have uploaded yesterday. Photographs were taken from a considerable distance, so cannot provide stats.

Flora of British India describes two species – 1) S. sagittifolia L. and 2) S. guayanensis H. B. & K.
Our group has accepted three species, in addition to above two S. trifolia L.
Would very much appreciate if members/experts provide differences between sagittifolia & trifolia.
However. FoP & FoC has some info.
So has IUCN.

Thanks, Surajit ji,
It appears like Arrowhead (Sagittaria sagittifolia)
For S. trifolia L., pl. see FOC illustration & this one (FOC)
GRIN (2012) treats Sagittaria trifolia L. = Sagittaria sagittifolia subsp. leucopetala (Miq.) Hartog

Thank you …, but my question was how do you differentiate between sagittifolia & trifolia?

To me it seems to be Sagittaria sagittifolia.

Many thanks to …, but strangely enough IUCN doesn’t list India as its geographic range. Perhaps what we have in India is Sagittaria trifolia L. or more precisely S. trifolia ssp. trifolia.

if taxonomists go and retrieve these specimen and classify and declare it to be Sagittaria sagittifolia then IUCN will have to correct its database…
just because its not listed in one site does not mean it does not exist…
just like some cancers or some infections … just like 100 years ago nobody believed that men get carcinoma of the breast, it just did not exist, it was not on the list… but now we know its common … and so is now on the list…
lists dont mean anything … if they are not constantly updated…
we can not change our diagnosis just because some list does not list it…
lists can always be changed, deleted or added to…
what it needs is some body knowledgeable, who has to make a proper diagnosis…
and in this case it might just be that you are the chosen instrument to bring it to light… to attention of a some real botanically vigorous study group…

this is what FoP thinks – “It differs from the European and North Asian Sagittaria sagittifolia Linn. in having pure white petals with no basal purple spot, yellow rather than purple anthers, reflexed rather than spreading sepals and very acute rather than blunt tips to the basal lobes of the leaf which are often longer than the blade.”
And this is what FoCthinks – “Most specimens determined as Sagittaria sagittifolia are, in fact, this taxon.

ok, got the point

Now we have BSI checklist, it says what we have is S. trifolia L., not S. sagittifolia L.

Bhadreshwar, Hooghly, West Bengal: 15/12/2007 & 21/11/07; Presidency College Kolkata, Green House– July 2009; PLANT FOR IDENTIFICATION -40 – indiantreepix | Google Groups Sagittaria sagittifolia ————— Tanay Bose – efloraofindia | Google Groups

Images by Prasad Dash (Inserted by J.M.Garg)



[EfloraofIndia_010212PD03_Sagittaria sagittifolia_Flora of odishs:
sharing the images of Sagittaria sagittifolia taken from the river bank of Ranpur

Sagittaria sagittifolia
Family: Alismataceae
Habit: perrenial herb
Habitat: Wild, near river bank.
Place of collection: Ranpur, Nayagarh, Odishsa

This a great photo set !!

Nice pictures indeed.
On searching Wikipedia I found that it is a member of an uncommon family : Alismataceae as mentioned by you.

It is native to wetlands throughout the temperate regions of Europe and Asia; in Britain it is the only native Sagittaria.
You have clearly depicted the arrow head shaped leaves:: sagittate….hence the name of the genus and the species.(?)

It is Sagittaria trifolia L. as per images, references and details herein.
We do not have Sagittaria sagittifolia L. in India as per Catalogue of Life, WCSP, Flora of Pakistan, Flora of China etc.


SYMBIOSIS : 347 : Attachments (1).  1 post by 1 author.
Attaching an image of a Large Cabbage-white butterfly on the flowers of Sagittaria sagittifolia. This plant is commonly known as Arrow Head.

It is Sagittaria trifolia L. as per images, references and details herein.
We do not have Sagittaria sagittifolia L. in India as per Catalogue of Life, WCSP, Flora of Pakistan, Flora of China etc.


Sagittaria trifolia L from Assam KD 07 Mar. 2020 : 1 post by 1 author. Attachments (4)

Attached images are Sagittaria trifolia L .
Date : 29.02.2020
Location: Assam

Family :  Alismataceae
Genus & species : Sagittaria trifolia L
Habitat: Aquatic
Habit : Herb

Flower : White


Sagittaria sagittifolia in FOI : 3 posts by 2 authors.
Sagittaria sagittifolia in FOI is Sagittaria trifolia L. as per images, references and details herein.
We do not have Sagittaria sagittifolia L. in India as per Catalogue of Life, WCSP, Flora of Pakistan, Flora of China etc.
Pl. correct.

Thanks …, I think you are right here. The roots of this plant are a common vegetable in Manipur. Two books on Manipur plants identified it as Sagittaria sagittifolia. However, the Flora of China page on Sagittaria trifolia subsp. trifolia says “Most specimens determined as Sagittaria sagittifolia are, in fact, this taxon.”


Identification of plant : 1 image.
Kindly provide me with inputs regarding which species the leaf of the plant belongs to. The image was provided by a friend and was taken in Kumaon region of Uttarakhandin a Chir Pine forest.

Some Sagittaria sp ?

Pl. provide details images for proper id.
Was it in or near a waterbody?
Pl. see your details with Sagittaria trifolia L., if it matches.

No it was growing in shady moist area in a Chir pine forest of Kumaon region of Uttarakhand.

Do you have other images of the plant?

No, sorry.

Please help me to identify this plant: (Mixed thread): 2 high res. images.
Date/Time- 14/04/2021
Location- Place, Altitude, GPS- West Medinipur, West Bengal
Habitat- Wild
Plant Habit- Rooted hydrophyte, with floating leaves
Inflorescence Type/ Size- Not found
Is it any species of Sagittaria ?

Thought it’s Nymphaea

Thanks, … I did not find such shape as per comparative images at

Maybe flowers can help.
Maybe some unknown hybrid.

As I am doing my project work on documenting the hydrophytic plants I only choose those plants that are purely wild. As per your suggestion I will surely visit the place at regular intervals to find its flowers. Thank you very much everyone.

It looks very difficult to me, in rare cases ever I have tried to identify a plant without any flower or fruit.

Yes, it can be Sagittaria. –
One species have floating leaves, but leaves are more ovate – efi thread
Another species features leaves rising above water ––-l/a/alismataceae/sagittaria/sagittaria-trifolia, but you may have instances like the one, in the same eFI page, submitted here – efi thread image
One Caldesia oligococca (F.Muell.) Buchenau (Alisma oligococcum, “rare in central Bengal” of “Bengal Plants”), having variable leaf-blade, has been reported from Assam.

I will go for Sagittaria trifolia L. as per description of leaves at Flora of China & Flora of Pakistan and as per details at Sagittaria

Me too, Sir, that’s why I linked … photo showing floating leaf.


Swamy/New series/ID/75 – Sagittarius japonica.: 2 images.
Received for ID from a friend, photographed in Mysore. For me the plant is Sagittarius japonica. Please confirm or otherwise.

This is an ornamental plant.

Yes, appears so as per images on net like this one:


Identification required 96738: 2 high res. images.
Location: Ganderbal Kashmir

Habitat: Marshes… ditches ..wetlands

Pl. check Sagittaria trifolia L., as per images and details herein.

I think it’s close.

Ranunculaceae ??

I will check

Yes …!

You should have posted habitat and leaf images at the beginning !