E-Flora BC: Electronic Atlas of the Flora of British Columbia

Sparganium eurycarpum Engelm.
broad-fruited bur-reed (broadfruit bur-reed)
Sparganiaceae (Bur-reed family)

Introduction to Vascular Plants

© Jamie Fenneman  Email the photographer   (Photo ID #17192)

E-Flora BC Static Map
Distribution of Sparganium eurycarpum
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Species Information

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Perennial, aquatic herb from long rhizomes; stems erect and emergent, 60-120 (200) cm tall.
Alternate, stiff, emergent, erect, keeled at the base, flat at the tips, linear, 20-80 cm long, 8-20 mm wide.
Inflorescence branched, of 1 or 2 female heads below and 5 to12 male heads above, the heads globe-shaped, unstalked, the female heads 2-2.6 cm wide, at least some borne above the leaf axils and subtended by conspicuous leaflike bracts; perianth segments 6, spoonlike, attached near the top of the flower stalk; stigmas 2 (rarely 1); anthers about 1-1.2 mm long.
Achenes, top-shaped, 3-5 mm wide, 5-10 mm long, unstalked, beaked, the beaks 2-4 mm long, straight; seeds usually 2.

Source: The Illustrated Flora of British Columbia

USDA Species Characteristics

Flower Colour:
Blooming Period:
Fruit/Seed characteristics:
Colour: Green
Present from Spring to Fall
Source:  The USDA

Habitat / Range

Wet meadows, shallow ponds and lakeshores in the lowland, steppe and montane zones; infrequent in S and E BC; N to NT, E to NF and S to ME, MA, PA, NY, VA, KY, MO, OK, NM, AZ, CA and MX.

Source: The Illustrated Flora of British Columbia


Ecological Framework for Sparganium eurycarpum

The table below shows the species-specific information calculated from
original data (BEC database) provided by the BC Ministry of Forests and Range.
(Updated August, 2013)

Site Information
Value / Class




Elevation (metres)
Slope Gradient (%) 0 1 2
Aspect (degrees)
[0 - N; 90 - E; 180 - S; 270 - W]
Soil Moisture Regime (SMR)
[0 - very xeric; 4 - mesic;
8 - hydric]
4 5 6
Modal Nutrient Regime
Number of field plots
 species was recorded in:
Modal BEC Zone Class
All BEC Zones (# of stations/zone) species was recorded in: CDF(2), CWH(2)


The climate type for this species, as reported in the: "British Columbia plant species codes and selected attributes. Version 6 Database" (Meidinger et al. 2008), is not evaluated, unknown or variable.

Synonyms and Alternate Names

Sparganium californicum Greene
Sparganium eurycarpum subsp. eurycarpum Engelm. [superfluous autonym]
Sparganium eurycarpum var. greenei

Taxonomic and Nomenclatural Links

Additional Photo Sources

General References