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Equisetum Linnaeus. Horsetail, Scouring Rush.

Key to Equisetum

A genus of 15-20 species, nearly cosmopolitan in distribution. This treatment follows Christenhusz et al. (2019) in recognizing 3 subgenera, the monotypic subgenus Paramochaete Chistenhusz & Husby (of n. South America), basal to the two main subgenera (and the ones in our flora -- see key): subgenus Equisetum and subgenus Hippochaete (Milde) Baker.

ID notes: Equisetum has a unique and nearly unmistakable appearance, with green, hollow, upright shoots, with regular joints, and at each joint junction (node) a sheath of whorled, tiny leaves. Some species also have a whorl of side branches associated with each node.

Ref: Christenhusz et al. (2019); Des Marais et al. (2003); Elgorriaga et al. (2018); Guillon (2004); Hauke (1993) In Flora of North America Editorial Committee (1993b); Hauke In Kramer & Green (1990); Lellinger (1985); Mickel (1979); Sheik & Weeks (2023); Zhang & Turland in FoC (2013). Show full citations.

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Hover over a shape, letter, icon, or arrow on the map for definition or see the legend. Data for arrows not developed for genera and families which may have species only occurring outside the flora area.

image of plant© Gary P. Fleming | Equisetum arvense | Original Image ⭷

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