The so-called water cabbage (Pistia Stratiotes) is a floating plant widely distributed in the tropics, and consisting of rosettes of broadish leaves several inches across and a tuft of roots hanging in the water.
In the ditches and pools common yellow and white water-lilies are seen, as well as water-soldier (Stratiotes aloides), great and lesser reed-mace, sweet flag and bur-reed.
They are waterplants, represented in Britain by frog-bit (Hydrocharis Morsusranae) and water-soldier (Stratiotes aloides).
Stratiotes aloides has a rosette of stiff swordlike leaves, which when the plant is in flower project above the Surface; it is also stoloniferous, the young rosettes sinking to the bottom at the beginning of winter and rising again to the surface in the spring.
Stratiotes has similar flowers which come above the surface only for pollination, becoming submerged again during ripening of the fruit.
Among the more abundant plants are nucules cf several species of Chara, and drifted fruits and seeds of water-lilies, of Folliculites (now generally referred to Stratiotes) and of Limnocarpus (allied to Potamogeton); there is little else mixed with these.
An extinct water-lily, Euryale limburgensis, belongs to a monotypic genus now confined to Assam and China; an extinct sedge, Dulichium vespiforme, belongs to a genus only living in America, though the only living species once flourished also in Denmark; an extinct species of water-aloe (Stratiotes elegans) makes a third genus, represented only by a single living species, which was evidently better represented in Pliocene times.