Cattails have tall slender stems with a cylindrical head of tightly packed pistillate (female) flowers. A narrow spike of staminate (male) flowers extends from the top of the head but withers after pollination. The "flowers" are minute and lack sepals and petals. The stamens and pistils are surrounded by hairs that become long and fluffy when ripe, and can float long distances with the tiny seeds. The long narrow leaves sheathe the lower stem. Found in swamps and other wet areas. There are only 4 species in our area.
This family contains flowers.