Scientific name

Lilaeopsis Greene

Common names

grasswort, water chives, microsword



Native distribution

America, Australia, New Zealand

Species commonly cultivated

Lilaeopsis brasiliensis (Glaz.) Affolter (South America)

L. carolinensis J.M. Coult. & Rose (America, Portugal)

L. macloviana (Gand.) A.W. Hill (South America)

L. novae-zelandiae A.W. Hill (New Zealand)

Adventive distribution

Lilaeopsis carolinensis is introduced in Portugal.

Weed status

information not available


submersed or emersed stoloniferous plant with septate foliage

Brief description

Perennial, small. Stems creeping, stoloniferous, bearing leaves and roots at each node. Leaves elongate, linear to lanceolate, septate, entire. Inflorescence an axillary umbel of few to several minute flowers. Sepals 5, small; petals 5, white or red. Dispersal by stem fragments and seeds.

Natural habitat

shallow waters and wet ground

Additional comments

Grass-like plants with characteristic inflorescence and septate foliage. Lilaeopsis often grows in short dense mats in shallow water along shore lines of lakes and in swamps.