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  GRIN Taxonomy for Plants
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Taxon: Azolla caroliniana Willd.

Genus: Azolla
Family: Salviniaceae. Also placed in: Azollaceae
Nomen number: 102986
Place of publication: Sp. pl. 5(1):541. 1810
Name verified on: 11-Dec-1995 by ARS Systematic Botanists. Last updated: 06-Aug-2002
No species priority site assigned.


Common names:

  • fairy-moss   (Source: Slocum & Robinson) – English
  • mosquito fern   (Source: Aquatics 26:20. 2004) – English
  • mosquito-plant   (Source: World Econ Pl ) – English

Economic importance:

  • Environmental: ornamental   (fide Dict Gard; Slocum & Robinson 1996)
  • Weed   (fide Aquatics 26:20-26. 2004)

Distributional range:

      Native: (links to other web resources are provided for some distributions)
  • NORTHERN AMERICA (Check conservation status in U.S. & Canada in NatureServe Explorer database)
    Eastern Canada: Canada - Ontario
    Northeastern U.S.A.: United States - Indiana, Massachusetts, New York, Ohio
    North-Central U.S.A.: United States - Wisconsin
    Southeastern U.S.A.: United States - Alabama, Georgia, Kentucky, Louisiana, Maryland, Mississippi, North Carolina, South Carolina, Virginia
    South-Central U.S.A.: United States - Texas
    Southern Mexico: Mexico - Chiapas
    Caribbean: Cuba; Jamaica; Puerto Rico
    Mesoamerica: Costa Rica; Guatemala; Honduras; Nicaragua; Panama
    Northern South America: French Guiana; Guyana; Suriname; Venezuela - Zulia
    Brazil: Brazil [s.]
    Western South America: Colombia; Peru
    Southern South America: Argentina [n.]; Uruguay

  • naturalized elsewhere

      Uncertain: (links to other web resources are provided for some distributions)
    Southeastern U.S.A.: United States - Florida

  • also cultivated


  • Boggan, J. et al. 1997. Checklist of the plants of the Guianas, ed. 2.
  • Breedlove, D. E., ed. 1981–. Flora of Chiapas.
  • Cuda, J. P. et al. 2004. Interference of natural regulation of the aquatic weed mosquito fern (Azolla caroliniana) by the red imported fire ant. Aquatics 26:20–26.
  • Davidse, G. et al., eds. 1994. Flora mesoamericana.
  • Encke, F. et al. 1984. Zander: Handwörterbuch der Pflanzennamen, 13. Auflage.
  • FNA Editorial Committee. 1993–. Flora of North America.
  • Huxley, A., ed. 1992. The new Royal Horticultural Society dictionary of gardening.
  • Liberty Hyde Bailey Hortorium. 1976. Hortus third.
  • Madeira, P. T. et al. 2013. Identity and origins of introduced and native Azolla species in Florida. Aquatic Bot. 111:9–15. [this study showed that the native Floridan population is a hybrid probably involving a South American Azolla].
  • Mickel, J. T. & A. R. Smith. 2004. The pteridophytes of Mexico. Mem. New York Bot. Gard. 88:1-1054. [= A. filiculoides Lam.].
  • Radford, A. E. et al. 1964. Manual of the vascular flora of the Carolinas.
  • Scoggan, H. J. 1978–1979. The flora of Canada, 4 vol.
  • Slocum, P. D. et al. 1996. Water gardening: water lilies and lotuses. 63.
  • Smitinand, T. & K. Larsen, eds. 1970–. Flora of Thailand.
  • Steyermark, J. A. et al., eds. 1995–. Flora of the Venezuelan Guayana.
  • Tutin, T. G. et al., eds. 1964–1980. Flora europaea.

Check other web resources for Azolla caroliniana Willd.:

Check other web resources for images:

  • Google Images Note: Be advised that their identity may be inaccurate. Proper identification of a plant may require specialized taxonomic knowledge or comparison with properly documented herbarium material.

Abbreviations & symbols in GRIN Taxonomy

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Cite as:
USDA, ARS, National Genetic Resources Program.
Germplasm Resources Information Network - (GRIN) [Online Database].
National Germplasm Resources Laboratory, Beltsville, Maryland.
URL: (25 November 2015)

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