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Azolla filiculoides

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Author: Jean B.A. P. de M. de Lamarck 1783
Family:  Azollaceae
Habitat:   Alaska, Argentina, Bolivia, Brazi, British Columbia, Chile, Colombia, Costa Rica, Dominican Republic, Ecuador, El Salvador, Galápagos, Guatemala, Guyana, Honduras, Mexico, Nicaragua, Panamá, Paraguay, Peru, Tristan da Cunha, Uruguay, USA, Venezuela, Venezuelan Antilles, Washington, Wisconsin (Europe, New Zealand, Southern Africa)
Soil:   No: Water
Water:   Plenty!
Sun:   Medium - Maximum
Height:  3 millimetres, 13-20 millimetres wide in stage one. 50 millimetres in stage two.
Flower:   No; Spores
Propagate:   Spores, Dividing
Names:   Water Fern, Pacific mosquitofern, American Water Fern
Synonyms:  Azolla squamosa, Molina 1819.
Azolla caroliniana,
Willd. 1810.

Azolla magellanica
, Carl Ludwig von Willdenow 1819.
Azolla microphylla,
Kaulf. 1824.
Azolla arbuscula,
Desv. 1827.

Azolla filiculoides
var. rubra, Strasb.
Azolla filiculoides subsp. cristata, Fraser-Jenk.

This little member of the Azollaceae family was given this name by Jean Baptiste Antoine Pierre de Monnet de Lamarck in 1783. It is naturally found in ponds, canals and other waters over a huge area, and have been spread to an even greater area. Just in the Americas, it is at least found in  Argentina, Bolivia, Brazil, Chile, Colombia, Costa Rica, Ecuador, Guyana, Hawaii; (Maui), Honduras, Paraguay, Peru, Trinidad, Tobago, Western US, Uruguay and Venezuela. It occurs natural in many parts of Asia and Australia, and have been spread around Europe, New Zealand and southern Africa.

The leaves are from green over slightly yellow to almost red. It grows in two stages, and only the larger, mature bares megaspores.

It is grown for its ability to fixing  nitrogen from the air due to it's colorations with a blue-green algae; Anabaena azollae.

Some plants I found on Galapagos, where they are known under the name; Azolla microphylla Kaulf. 1824