Azolla filiculoides, photographed by Karlheinz Knoch.

Belongs within: Leptosporangiatae.

The Salviniaceae are a family of small, free-floating aquatic ferns. There are two distinctive living genera, Azolla and Salvinia.

Characters (from Smith et al. 2006): Plants free-floating, roots present (Azolla) or lacking (Salvinia); stems protostelic, dichotomously branched; leaves sessile, alternate, small (ca. 1-25 mm long), round to oblong, entire; veins free (Azolla) or anastomosing (Salvinia); spores of two kinds (plants heterosporous), large megaspores and small microspores, these globose, trilete; spore germination endosporic; x = 9 (Salvinia), 22 (Azolla).

<==Salviniaceae [Salviniales, Salviniidae]
    |--Daharia Barale & Ouaja 2002BO02
    |    `--*D. tunisiensis Barle & Ouaja 2002BO02
    |    |--S. auriculariaF04
    |    |--S. cucullataP88
    |    |--S. formosaHL08
    |    |--S. molesta Mitchell 1972B06
    |    |--S. natans (Linnaeus) Allioni 1785 (see below for synonymy)B06
    |    |--S. reussii Ettingshausen 1866HL08
    |    |--S. rotundifoliaNB-P09
    |    `--S. stewartii Jain 1971C93
    `--Azolla Lamarck 1783WP05, A61 [Azollaceae]
         |--A. carolinianaM03
         |--A. distincta Snead 1969C93
         |--A. extincta Jain 1971C93
         |--A. filiculoidesWP05 [incl. A. magellanicaM03]
         |    |--A. f. var. filiculoidesH90
         |    `--A. f. var. rubraH90 [=A. rubra Br. 1810A61]
         |--A. imbricata (Roxburgh) Nakai 1925 [=Salvinia imbricata Roxburgh ex Griffith 1844]B06
         |--A. mexicanaH93
         |--A. pinnataKLG05
         `--A. priscaJD05

Salvinia natans (Linnaeus) Allioni 1785 [=Marsilea natans Linnaeus 1763; incl. S. verticillata Roxb. ex Griffith 1844]B06

*Type species of generic name indicated


[A61] Allan, H. H. 1961. Flora of New Zealand vol. 1. Indigenous Tracheophyta: Psilopsida, Lycopsida, Filicopsida, Gymnospermae, Dicotyledones. R. E. Owen, Government Printer: Wellington (New Zealand).

[BO02] Barale, G., & M. Ouaja. 2002. La biodiversité végétale des gisements d’âge Jurassique supérieur-Crétacé inférieur de Merbah El Asfer (Sud-Tunisien). Cretaceous Research 23: 707–737.

[B06] Biswas, A. 2006. Pteridophytes of Indian Botanic Garden, Howrah. Bulletin of the Botanical Survey of India 48: 175–188.

[C93] Cleal, C. J. 1993. Pteridophyta. In: Benton, M. J. (ed.) The Fossil Record 2 pp. 779–794. Chapman & Hall: London.

[F04] Ferrar, P. 2004. Australian entomology: isolated, or in touch with the rest of the world? Australian Journal of Entomology 43 (3): 329–333.

[H90] Harden, G. J. (ed.) 1990. Flora of New South Wales vol. 1. New South Wales University Press.

[HL08] Henniger, M., & R. Leder. 2008. Eozäne Makroflora der Querfurter Mulde. Mauritiana 20 (2): 229–251.

[H93] Hickman, J. C. (ed.) 1993. The Jepson Manual: Higher Plants of California. University of California Press: Berkeley (California).

[JD05] Junge, F. W., M. Dolezych, H. Walther, T. Böttger, A. Kühl, L. Kunzmann, P. Morgenstern, T. Steinberg & R. Stange. 2005. Ein Fenster in Landschaft und Vegetation vor 37 Millionen Jahren: Lithologische, sedimentgeochemische und paläobotanische Befunde aus einem Paläoflusssystem des Weißelsterbeckens. Mauritiana 19 (2): 185–273.

[KLG05] Kumar, S., J. Lal & P. Gupta. 2005. Ricciocarpos Corda (Hepaticae) from Maldah district, West Bengal: a new generic record for Gangetic Plain. Bulletin of the Botanical Survey of India 47: 131–132.

[M03] Macloskie, G. 1903. Pteridophyta, ferns and fernlike plants. In: Scott, W. B. (ed.) Reports of the Princeton University Expeditions to Patagonia, 18961899 vol. 8. Botany pp. 127–138. The University: Princeton (New Jersey).

[NB-P09] Norton, R. A., & V. M. Behan-Pelletier. 2009. Suborder Oribatida. In: Krantz, G. W., & D. E. Walter (eds) A Manual of Acarology 3rd ed. pp. 430–564. Texas Tech University Press.

Smith, A. R., K. M. Pryer, E. Schuettpelz, P. Korall, H. Schneider & P. G. Wolf. 2006. A classification for extant ferns. Taxon 55 (3): 705–731.

[WP05] Wikström, N., & K. M. Pryer. 2005. Incongruence between primary sequence data and the distribution of a mitochondrial atp1 group II intron among ferns and horsetails. Molecular Phylogenetics and Evolution 36: 484–493.

One comment

  1. And quite importantly, because Azolla harbors a nitrogen fixing symbiont, Anabaena, it can be used in rice agriculture as a low-tech means of increasing yield.

Leave a comment

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *