WV Wetland and Riparian Flora

The purpose of this resource is to provide an introduction to wetland and riparian flora found in this region. The plants are arranged within the groups below.  Within each group the plants are arranged alphabetically by their common name. The scientific and common names are those given in the US Fish and Wildlife Service National Wetland Inventory.  

Main plant categories: (1) Monocots: Angiosperms with one cotyledon. (2) Dicots: The largest group of angiosperms, characterized by two cotyledons and three symmetrically placed pollen apertures. The links below provide many examples within each of the sub-categories.
Ferns and relatives: Any of numerous flowerless and seedless vascular plants having true roots from a rhizome and fronds that uncurl upward; reproduce by spores. 

Sedges: Any of a family (Cyperaceae); grass-like plants often found on wet ground or in water, having usually triangular, solid stems, three rows of narrow, pointed leaves and minute flowers born in spikelets. 

Other Monocots and Rushes: This category includes (Monocotyledoneae); chiefly herbaceous seed plants having an embryo with a single cotyledon, usually parallel-veined leaves, and floral organs arranged in cycles of three. This category also includes rushes (Juncaceae).

Grasses: Plants of the family Gramineae characterized by rounded, hollow or pithy jointed stems (culms), and narrow sheathing leaves with parallel veins. The leaves alternate on two sides of the stem. The junction of the blade and sheath often bears an erect fringe of hairs (ligules) and sometimes also earlike projections (auricles). Flowers are borne in reduced spikes (spikelets). 

Herbaceous dicots: A plant with a non-woody stem. The upper parts will die back at the end of the growing season. This category is subdivided into herbs with mostly compound leaves, herbs with simple mostly alternate leaves and herbs with simple mostly opposite leaves. 

Shrubs: A low-growing woody plant usually under 15 ft. that often has multiple stemsTrees: A tree can be defined as a large, perennial, woody plant. Though there is no set definition regarding minimum size, the term generally applies to plants at least 20 ft. high at maturity and, more importantly, having secondary branches supported on a single main stem or trunk.

Vines: A plant with long stems, which depends on other plants or surfaces for support. Vines may get that support by means of tendrils, by twining around another object, by attaching themselves with aerial rootlets, or merely by sprawling over a more rigid plant.   
 
Additional Resources 
1.  What are Riparian Buffers?
2. 
Photos of wetland plants from the Upper Midwest
3.  US Army Corps of Engineers: National Wetland Plant List
4.  US Fish and Wildlife Services: Wetland Mapper
 
5.  Wetland Monitoring

6.  Wetland study materials  (A wide vareity of resources
)

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