Butomus umbellatus - L.
Flowering-rush
Other Common Names: flowering rush
Taxonomic Status: Accepted
Related ITIS Name(s): Butomus umbellatus L. (TSN 38886)
French Common Names: butome ombelle
Unique Identifier: ELEMENT_GLOBAL.2.144871
Element Code: PMBUT01010
Informal Taxonomy: Plants, Vascular - Flowering Plants - Other flowering plants
 
Kingdom Phylum Class Order Family Genus
Plantae Anthophyta Monocotyledoneae Alismatales Butomaceae Butomus
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Concept Reference
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Concept Reference: Kartesz, J.T. 1994. A synonymized checklist of the vascular flora of the United States, Canada, and Greenland. 2nd edition. 2 vols. Timber Press, Portland, OR.
Concept Reference Code: B94KAR01HQUS
Name Used in Concept Reference: Butomus umbellatus
Taxonomic Comments: Eurasian, introduced into North America (FNA, review draft 5/98).
Conservation Status
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NatureServe Status

Global Status: G5
Global Status Last Reviewed: 22Mar1994
Global Status Last Changed: 22Mar1994
Rounded Global Status: G5 - Secure
Nation: United States
National Status: NNA
Nation: Canada
National Status: NNA (23Sep2014)

U.S. & Canada State/Province Status
United States Connecticut (SNA), Idaho (SNA), Illinois (SNA), Indiana (SNA), Michigan (SNA), Minnesota (SNA), Montana (SNA), New York (SNA), North Dakota (SNA), Ohio (SNA), Pennsylvania (SNA), South Dakota (SNA), Vermont (SNA), Wisconsin (SNA)
Canada Alberta (SNA), British Columbia (SNA), Manitoba (SNA), New Brunswick (SNA), Nova Scotia (SNA), Ontario (SNA), Prince Edward Island (SNA), Quebec (SNA)

Other Statuses

NatureServe Global Conservation Status Factors

Other NatureServe Conservation Status Information

Distribution
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U.S. States and Canadian Provinces
Color legend for Distribution Map
NOTE: The distribution shown may be incomplete, particularly for some rapidly spreading exotic species.

U.S. & Canada State/Province Distribution
United States CTexotic, IDexotic, ILexotic, INexotic, MIexotic, MNexotic, MTexotic, NDexotic, NYexotic, OHexotic, PAexotic, SDexotic, VTexotic, WIexotic
Canada ABexotic, BCexotic, MBexotic, NBexotic, NSexotic, ONexotic, PEexotic, QCexotic

Range Map
No map available.

Ecology & Life History Not yet assessed
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Economic Attributes Not yet assessed
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Management Summary Not yet assessed
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Population/Occurrence Delineation Not yet assessed
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Population/Occurrence Viability
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U.S. Invasive Species Impact Rank (I-Rank)
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Disclaimer: While I-Rank information is available over NatureServe Explorer, NatureServe is not actively developing or maintaining these data. Species with I-RANKs do not represent a random sample of species exotic in the United States; available assessments may be biased toward those species with higher-than-average impact.

I-Rank: Medium/Low
Rounded I-Rank: Medium
I-Rank Reasons Summary: Butomus umbellatus is not yet widespread in Wisconsin but appears it could be a problem. It appears to outcompete the willows and cattails in Idaho.
B. umbellatus is listed as one of the invasive plant species that threatens Neobeckia aquatica currently listed as S1 in Vermont. In New England, it inhabits aquatic, floodplain forest, lake or pond, river or stream, and marsh. It also inhabits wetlands and deep water in Wisconsin. It is also found along shores in shallow water and deep water in Minnesota. It is actively expanding its range in North America. In the last 35 years the species has spread in a sporadic manner from a limited area around the Great Lakes and St. Lawrence River. It is sold commercially but is banned in some states. Control of this plant requires removal of all parts of the plant.

Subrank I - Ecological Impact: Low
Subrank II - Current Distribution/Abundance: Medium
Subrank III - Trend in Distribution/Abundance: High/Medium
Subrank IV - Management Difficulty: Low/Insignificant
I-Rank Review Date: 12Feb2004
Evaluator: Killeffer, T.
Native anywhere in the U.S?
Native Range: Eurasia (FNA, 2000).

Download "An Invasive Species Assessment Protocol: Evaluating Non-Native Plants for their Impact on Biodiversity". (PDF, 1.03MB)
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Screening Questions

S-1. Established outside cultivation as a non-native? YES
Comments: Naturalized (FNA, 2000).

S-2. Present in conservation areas or other native species habitat? Yes
Comments: "Able to invade natural vegetation" (Roberts, 1972).

Subrank I - Ecological Impact: Low

1. Impact on Ecosystem Processes and System-wide Parameters:Low significance
Comments: Can tolerate water as deep or deeper than some native species there by reducing open water (Fewless 2003).

2. Impact on Ecological Community Structure:Moderate significance
Comments: Can easily invade areas not occupied by other plants due to fluctuations in water levels (Proulx, 2000).

3. Impact on Ecological Community Composition:Low significance
Comments: "May crowd out native plants and in turn harm fish and wildlife" (Proulx, 2000). Documentation from between 1956 and 1973 of B. umbellatus appearing to outcompete the willows and cattails in Idaho (White 1993).

4. Impact on Individual Native Plant or Animal Species:Insignificant
Comments: No reports found showing impacts to individual native species so assumed none.

5. Conservation Significance of the Communities and Native Species Threatened:Medium/Low significance
Comments: B. umbellatus is listed as one of the invasive plant species that threatens Neobeckia aquatica currently listed as S1 in Vermont. Only half of the sites have B. umbellatus (Gabel and Les 2000).

Subrank II. Current Distribution and Abundance: Medium

6. Current Range Size in Nation:Moderate significance
Comments: Kartesz 1999.

7. Proportion of Current Range Where the Species is Negatively Impacting Biodiversity:Moderate significance
Comments: In Wisconsin it isn't widespread yet but seems to have the potential to be a serious problem (Fewless 2003). Slow rate of long distance dispersal in Minnesota since many populations there do not produce seed. It is illegal to buy or sell it in Minnesota (Proulx 2000). Often doesn't flower in Connecticut(IPANE 2001). Problem in Vermont for Neobeckia aquatica (Gabel and Les 2000). B. umbellatus "impacts habitat and recreation along lake and river shorelines" in Montana (Rowland 2002). Species on the Prohibited Plant List for 2004 for the states of New Hampshire, Vermont and Washington (Ponds, Plants and More 2004).

8. Proportion of Nation's Biogeographic Units Invaded:Medium/Low significance
Comments: CA. 14 (TNC and FNA 2000)

9. Diversity of Habitats or Ecological Systems Invaded in Nation:High/Moderate significance
Comments: Habitats in New England: Aquatic, floodplain forest, lake or pond, river or stream (IPANE). Marsh, wetlands and deep water in Wisconsin (Fewless 2003). Emergent plant along shorelines and submersed in lakes and rivers (Proulx 2000). Along shores in shallow water and deep water in Minnesota (Minnesota DNR, no date).

Subrank III. Trend in Distribution and Abundance: High/Medium

10. Current Trend in Total Range within Nation:High/Moderate significance
Comments: Actively expanding its range in North America. In the last 35 years the species has spread in a sporadic manner from a limited area around the Great Lakes and St. Lawrence River (White 1993) Sold commercially but is banned in some states (Minnesota DNR, no date).

11. Proportion of Potential Range Currently Occupied:Moderate significance
Comments: Hardiness zone 3 - 10 (IPANE 2001) which is basically the whole lower 48 plus Hawaii and some of Alaska (USDA 1990).

12. Long-distance Dispersal Potential within Nation:High significance
Comments: Seeds float (IPANE). Planted in gardens, rhizomes and root pieces break off and form new plants, muskrats may use parts to build houses, boaters transport fragments, and ice movement (Proulx 2000).

13. Local Range Expansion or Change in Abundance:Moderate significance
Comments: Based on data from 1955 to 1991, the species doubled its general range (White 1993). Appears to expand slowly in some areas due to not producing fertile seed and some historic populations have not been relocated in recent years (Proulx 2000)

14. Inherent Ability to Invade Conservation Areas and Other Native Species Habitats:Unknown
Comments: No mention that this species only grows in areas with disturbance but also no mention of the habitats being undisturbed either.

15. Similar Habitats Invaded Elsewhere:Low significance
Comments: Around the Great Lakes region and St. Lawrence River in Southern Canada (White 1993).

16. Reproductive Characteristics:High significance
Comments: Seeds float and are dispersed by water (IPANE). Seeds are long-lived (White 1993).

Subrank IV. General Management Difficulty: Low/Insignificant

17. General Management Difficulty:Medium/Low significance
Comments: Multiple cuttings in one year below water level reduces abundance but all parts of the plant must be removed (Proulx, 2000).

18. Minimum Time Commitment:Insignificant
Comments: Can be controlled at manageable levels by cutting several times in the summer (Proulx, 2000).

19. Impacts of Management on Native Species:Insignificant
Comments: If selectively cutting, then there should be little to no impact on the native vegetation but if the cutting is by a machine (unlikely, unless the machine is capable of capturing all the cut pieces of plant material) then some native species will probably also be cut.

20. Accessibility of Invaded Areas:High/Moderate significance
Comments: Grows along riverbanks and lakeshores (IPANE) and also in deep water (USGS).
Authors/Contributors
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Botanical data developed by NatureServe and its network of natural heritage programs (see Local Programs), The North Carolina Botanical Garden, and other contributors and cooperators (see Sources).

References
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  • Fewless, G. 2003. Invasive Plants of Northeastern Wisconsin. ONLINE. Available: http://www.uwgb.edu/biodiversity/herbarium/invasive_species/invasive_plants01.htm. (Accessed 2004).

  • Flora of North America Editorial Committee. 2000. Flora of North America north of Mexico. Vol. 22. Magnoliophyta: Alismatidae, Arecidae, Commelinidae (in part), and Zingiberidae. Oxford Univ. Press, New York. xxiii + 352 pp.

  • Gabel, J. D. and D. H. Les. 2000. Neobeckia aquatica (Greene): North American Lake Cress. New England Plant Conservation Program, Conservation and Research Plan. Prepared for: New England Wild Flower Society, 180 Hemenway Road, Framingham, MA.

  • Haynes, R.R. 2000. Butomaceae. In: Flora of North America Editorial Committee. Flora of North America North of Mexico. Volume 22 Magnoliophyta: Alismatidae, Arecidae, Commelinidae (in part), and Zingiberidae. Oxford Univ. Press, New York.

  • Invasive Plant Atlas of New England (IPANE). 2001. List of species of interest. Available: http://invasives.eeb.uconn.edu/ipane/NPS_list.htm. (Accessed 2004).

  • Kartesz, J.T. 1994. A synonymized checklist of the vascular flora of the United States, Canada, and Greenland. 2nd edition. 2 vols. Timber Press, Portland, OR.

  • Minnesota Department of Natural Resources. No Date. Flowering rush (Butomus umbellatus). Minnesota invasive non-native terrestrial plants, an identification guide for resource managers. http://www.dnr.state.mn.us/herbaceousplants/floweringrush.html (accessed 2004).

  • Ponds, Plants and More. 2004. Prohibited Plant List for 2004. Bentleyville, Pennsylvania. http://www.pondsplantsandmore.com/generic70.html (accessed 2004).

  • Proulx, N. 2000. Exotic Flowering Rush. Minnesota Department of Natural Resources Exotic Species Program. St. Paul, MN.

  • Roberts, M. L. 1972. Butomus umbellatus in the Mississippi Watershed. Castanea 37:83-85.

  • Rowland, A., M. Mack, and P. Rice. 2002. Water Weeds of Montana. National Bison Range, Moiese, MT. Abstract from the Western Aquatic Plant Management Society Meeting.

  • USDA Agricultural Research Service. 1990. USDA Plants Hardiness Zone Map. Misc. Publ. Number 1475.

  • White, D.J., E. Haber, and C. Keddy. 1993. Invasive plants of natural habitats in Canada. Canadian Museum of Nature. Ottawa, Canada. 121 pp. Available: http://www.cws-scf.ec.gc.ca/publications/inv/index_e.cfm.

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