The Eriocaulaceae are a family of monocotyledonous flowering plants in the order Poales, commonly known as the pipewort family. The family is large, with about 1207 known species described in seven genera. They are widely distributed, with the centers of diversity for the group occurring in tropical regions, particularly the Americas. Very few species extend to temperate regions, with only 16 species in the United States, mostly in the southern states from California to Florida, only two species in Canada.

Only one species (E. aquaticum) occurs in Europe, where it is confined to the Atlantic Ocean coasts of Scotland and Ireland. China has 35 species, also mostly southern.

The species are mostly herbaceous perennial plants, though some are annual plants; they resemble plants in the related families Cyperaceae (sedges) and Juncaceae (rushes), and like them, have rather small, wind-pollinated flowers grouped together in capitulum-like inflorescences.

The family includes: Actinocephalus, Comanthera, Eriocaulon, Lachnocaulon, Mesanthemum, Paepalanthus, Philodice, Rondonanthus, Syngonanthus, Tonina. In this article, we will consider only the eriocaulon distribution in nature.


ERIOS tend to be associated with wet soils, many growing in shallow water, in wetlands, or in wet savannas like flatwoods. In wet soils, their abundance appears to be related to water levels, fire frequency, and competition from other plants such as grasses. Experiments have shown that they are weak competitors compared to many other wetland plant species. Some species can persist as buried seeds during unfavorable conditions.

Eriocaulon of Indo-China was reported by Lecomte. The under collection of specimens and many undiscovered areas, especially, the species diversity of this family in Cambodia, Laos and Vietnam is still poorly known.

USA. Eriocaulon aquaticum is one of only two species of this genus found at northern latitudes of the US and the only one found in Minnesota, where it is mostly restricted to lakes or bogs in the Arrowhead region. It can be found in both peaty/organic and sandy substrates from the shore waterline out to 3 foot depth, though typically in shallow water. Its diminutive size can make it difficult to pick out from among other emergent reeds or sedges.


There are species from North America - Eriocaulon aquaticum, Eriocaulon benthamii Kunth, Eriocaulon cinereum, Eriocaulon compressum, Eriocaulon decangulare, Eriocaulon koernickianum, Eriocaulon parkeri, Eriocaulon scariosum, Eriocaulon texense and others.

On the Australian continent eriocaulon is represented by about 16 species. The range of their distribution - the east coast from north to south. The map points marked places eriocaulon growth.

There are species from Australia - Eriocaulon aloefolium, Eriocaulon athertonense, Eriocaulon australasicum, Eriocaulon australe, Eriocaulon bifistulosum, Eriocaulon carpentariae, Eriocaulon carsonii, Eriocaulon cinereum, Eriocaulon concretum, Eriocaulon giganticum, Eriocaulon inapertum, Eriocaulon pallidum and others.

List of officially recognized species erioсaulon you can view by following link: Wikipedia.

All other names - sp. (Lat. species..) - mean that the taxon is either unknown, unspecified, or unnamed. In other words, science is not a separate species, and perhaps just a mutation or variation of the known species.