Pollen and Spore Atlas

Schoenoplectus californicus CYPERACEAE

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equatorial view
equatorial view
polar view
polar view
surface pattern
surface pattern
wall view
wall view
aperture view
aperture view
unique feature
unique feature


Pollen / Spore Morphologic Type(s) Surface Pattern(s) Equatorial Size Polar Size
min max mean min max mean
pollen inaperturate psilate 45.0 40.0

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Aperture Count(s) 4
Exine Type(s) tectate
Columella visible
Pore Shape(s) irregular
Morphology Notes Periporate. Pore aperture thin and not defined. Exine thin, appears to be scabrate but actual thinning of exine at columnellae area below exine. Sculpture tectate/psilate. Shape irregular and sometimes elongated. Often found folded in slides with pores broken. Three equatorial pores and one polar.

Ecology and Geography

Plant Type Cotyledon Type Floristic Region(s) Habit Terrestrial(s) Cultivated
angiosperm monocot Hawaiian Islands,
East Pacific Islands,
New Zealand and Islands (south),
Other outside Australasia
herb true

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Vegetation Community(-ties) herbland
Common Name Totora, Nga'atu
Habitat Notes Wet environments particularly the edge of lakes,marshes, peat bogs and on Easter Island on the floating mat. Humans cultivate Totora by planting rhizomes in trenches up to 5m deep in South America on the coast as well as at Lake Titicaca. Found in South America, California to Louisiana across the southern United States and Hawaii. Found in seeds and fossil pollen record of KAO3 in the lake Rano Kao, Rapa Nui (Easter Island) over the past 15k years. (Gossen,2010)
Herbarium Link:


Dickerman 1044

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Collection Site Puebla
Collection Country Mexico
Collection Date 1958-12-18
Preparation Method Cor, KOH, acet, saf
Slide Medium silicon
Preparation Date 2007-11-30
Microscopic Instrument LEICA DMLB #188768
Publication Information Schoenoplectus scirpus is the new name for Scirpus californicus to distinguish the large sedge known to the Americas. Heiser called the species on Easter Island (Scirpus californicus var. paschalis and the one growing on the coast of South America and lake Titicaca as Scirpus tatora). With DNA testing there is more than one species in the lakes. The name is used interchangeably between Scirpus and Schoenoplectus.(Gossen, 2010)
Collection Notes Processed at the Pollen Laboratory, University of Minnesota, USA from the collecton of Ed Cushing, slide ref. B3652.