Native SpeciesNarrow-leaved cattail

Typha angustifolia
FOUND by C G6 n
ID Questioned
Quality checked by g5
Peer reviewed by g5
Field Notes
Whilst nearby construction we found a small wetland complete with a parking lot. It had a large plant population and good biodiversity. Across a small paved road lies woods, behind us lies a large collection of bright yellow school busses. Due to the pollution of cars and construction the environment could easily die out.
A sketch of our study site.
Supporting Evidence
Photo of my evidence.
The flower is brown and cylindrical. It feels like styrofoam. It's a unisex plant. The top is female and the bottom is male. The process of reproduction is vegetative.
Photo of my evidence.
The stem is long and narrow. It is light green and has oval shaped leaves. The leaves go off opposite sides of the stem. The flower has a large coverage with many bunches of cattails throughout the area.
Photo of my evidence.
There is no separation between the female flower seeds and the male pollen. The part beyond the flower is a yellowish brown. In some seasons the tip is grey.
Species Observation: Species Looked For
Did you find it?: 
I think I found it
Scientific name:
Typha angustifolia
Common name:
Narrow-leaved cattail
Sampling method: 
Just looking around
Photo of our sampling method.
Place Studied
We’re sorry, JavaScript is required to view the map. If JavaScript is you may wish to upgrade to a newer browser in order to view this map.
Map this species
N 43.737010 °
W -70.275640 °
Observation Site Information
A photo of our study site.
Upland - Developed areas
Trip Information
Falmouth Middle School Yard
Trip date: 
Mon, 2014-09-22 08:36
Town or city: 
Type of investigation: 
Species Survey


Great sketch!

These two species can be hard to tell apart and have characteristics that overlap, but generally the leaves on T. angustifolia are about a centimeter or less in width. The inflorescence on angustifolia is generally 1-2 cm wide (so under an inch) while that of latifolia is generally 2-3 cm (so an inch or more).

The brown sausage-looking thing is actually a group of flowers, called an inflorescence. The male inflorescence (including pollen) is long-gone by this time of year, but it sat above the female portion. Why do you think the male section (that produces light as dust pollen) would sit above the female portion?

If there are male and female flowers, and if the flowers produce seed, reproduction is sexual. Reproduction in cattails is frequently sexual (what you're seeing here) and also vegetative (by spreading from underground stems called rhizomes).

Why do you think there are fluffy hairs attached to the small seeds of cattails?

Good job!

I like so much your job. Is awesome.


I love your sketch and descriptions. Not only did you give great evidence, but I learned more about cattail reproduction. Thanks for sharing and happy observing.