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Echinodorus cordifolius (Creeping burhead)
Marr, Minnette

Echinodorus cordifolius

Echinodorus cordifolius (L.) Griseb.

Creeping Burhead, Lance-leaf Burhead, Radican Sword, Burhead, Creeping Water-plantain

Alismataceae (Water-Plantain Family)

Synonym(s): Echinodorus radicans

USDA Symbol: ECCO3

USDA Native Status: L48 (N)

Another plant in the Water-Plantain Family, with blossoms resembling those of the arrowhead, grows under similar conditions: the burhead grows to 4 feet high and is often arched or lying on the ground.

Members of the Water-Plantain Family grow in water, in swamps, on muddy banks, or occasionally in wet sand. Each plant has long-petioled leaves in a clump with a flowering stem rising among them. The flowers have 3 green sepals, 3 white or pink-tinged petals, 6 or more stamens, and several pistils. Stamens and pistils may be in separate flowers.


From the Image Gallery

7 photo(s) available in the Image Gallery

Plant Characteristics

Duration: Annual
Habit: Herb
Leaf Complexity: Simple
Leaf Shape: Ovate
Leaf Venation: Parallel
Leaf Pubescence: Glabrous
Leaf Margin: Entire
Leaf Apex: Obtuse
Leaf Base: Cordate
Breeding System: Flowers Bisexual
Fruit Type: Achene
Size Notes: Stems arched, sometimes prostrate, up to about 4 feet long.
Leaf: green
Flower: Flowers 12 mm

Bloom Information

Bloom Color: White
Bloom Time: Apr , May , Jun , Jul , Aug , Sep


USA: AL , AR , DC , DE , FL , GA , IA , IL , IN , KS , KY , LA , MD , MO , MS , NC , OK , SC , TN , TX , VA
Native Habitat: In mud and shallow water of ponds and quiet streams in East Texas. Sand, loam, or clay; moist soil or submerged in water.

Growing Conditions

Water Use: High
Light Requirement: Shade
Soil Moisture: Wet
Soil Description: Southern USA & MexicoCan be cultivated in a frost-free garden pond. This plant has a thick rhizome & dense root system. In an aquarium setting is best kept in a poor medium & low light to assure it remains submersed
Conditions Comments: A pond plant with delicate white flowers atop arching stalks, burhead is suitable to use in ponds or containers. It blooms steadily through the summer.


Conspicuous Flowers: yes

National Wetland Indicator Status

This information is derived from the U.S. Army Corps of Engineers National Wetland Plant List, Version 3.1 (Lichvar, R.W. 2013. The National Wetland Plant List: 2013 wetland ratings. Phytoneuron 2013-49: 1-241). Click here for map of regions.

From the National Organizations Directory

According to the species list provided by Affiliate Organizations, this plant is on display at the following locations:

Lady Bird Johnson Wildflower Center - Austin, TX


Bibref 248 - Texas Wildflowers: A Field Guide (1984) Loughmiller, C. & L. Loughmiller

Search More Titles in Bibliography

Web Reference

Webref 38 - Flora of North America (2019) Missouri Botanical Garden, St. Louis, MO & Harvard University Herbaria, Cambridge, MA.
Webref 23 - Southwest Environmental Information Network (2009) SEINet - Arizona Chapter

Additional resources

USDA: Find Echinodorus cordifolius in USDA Plants
FNA: Find Echinodorus cordifolius in the Flora of North America (if available)
Google: Search Google for Echinodorus cordifolius


Record Modified: 2023-02-07
Research By: TWC Staff, TMH, JSC

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