Sagitta latifolia (Willd.) Nieuwl.
Sagittaria engelmanniana longirostra (Micheli) Bogin
Sagittaria esculenta Howell
Sagittaria gigantea Riddell
Sagittaria gracilis Pursh
Sagittaria hastata Pursh
Sagittaria longirostra (Micheli) J.G.Sm.
Sagittaria obtuse Muhl. ex Willd.
Sagittaria ornithorhyncha Small
Sagittaria planipes Fernald
Sagittaria pubescens Muhl.
Sagittaria sagittifolia angustifolia Hook.
Sagittaria sagittifolia gracilis (Pursh) Torr.
Sagittaria sagittifolia hastata (Pursh) Torr.
Sagittaria sagittifolia latifolia (Willd.) Muhl.
Sagittaria sagittifolia longirostra Micheli
Sagittaria sagittifolia macrophylla Hook.
Sagittaria sagittifolia obtusa (Engelm.) Britton
Sagittaria sagittifolia pubescens (Muhl.) Micheli
Sagittaria sagittifolia pubescens (Muhl.) Torr.
Sagittaria sagittifolia variabilis (Engelm.) Micheli
Sagittaria sagittifolia vulgaris Hook.
Sagittaria simplex Pursh
Sagittaria variabilis Engelm.
Sagittaria viscose C.Mohr
Common Name: Duck Potato
Duck potato is a herbaceous perennial plant of marshy soils, producing clumps of stems 30 - 60cm tall.
The plant was a major food for the native N. Americans, and it is still harvested from the wild for local use by many people. The plant also has minor local medicinal uses. It is grown as an ornamental.
S. America - Colombia, Ecuador, Venezuela, through Central America to all areas of N. America except the far north.
Ditches, ponds, lakes and swampy areas in most parts of N. America[
|Cultivation Status||Ornamental, Wild
A very adaptable plant, found in lowland areas from the cold temperate to tropical zones. It is hardy to at least -20°c[
A pond or bog garden plant, it requires a moist or wet loamy soil in a sunny position[
]. Prefers shallow, still or slowly flowing water up to 12cm deep[
A polymorphic species[
Tubers - raw or cooked[
]. Excellent when roasted, the texture is somewhat like potatoes with a taste like sweet chestnuts[
]. The tubers can be eaten raw but they are rather bitter (especially the skin)[
]. It is best to remove this skin after the tubers have been cooked[
]. The tubers can also be dried and ground into a powder, this powder can be used as a gruel or mixed with cereal flours and used to make bread[
]. The N. American Indians would slice the boiled roots into thin sections and then string them on ropes to dry in much the same way as apples[
].The egg-shaped tubers are 4 - 5cm long and are borne on the ends of slender roots, often 30cm deep in the soil and some distance from the parent plant[
]. The tubers are best harvested in the late summer as the leaves die down[
]. They cannot be harvested by pulling out the plant since the tops break off easily, leaving the tubers in the ground[
A poultice of the leaves has been used to stop milk production[
A tea made from the roots is used as a digestive[
]. A poultice of the roots is used in the treatment of wounds and sores[
Seed - best sown as soon as it is ripe in a pot standing in about 5cm of water. Prick out the seedlings into individual pots when they are large enough to handle, and gradually increase the depth of water as the plants grow until it is about 5cm above the top of the pot. Plant out in late spring or early summer of the following year.
Division of the tubers in spring or autumn. Easy.
Runners potted up at any time in the growing season.
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