Lythrum salicaria L.
Family: Lythraceae
purple loosestrife, spiked loosestrife
Lythrum salicaria image
Matthew L. Wagner  
Etymology: Lythrum: from Greek lythron meaning "blood," and alluding to the color of the flowers or to the reputed styptic (tending to contract or bind, tending to check bleeding) qualities of some species
Plants: erect, perennial, 1'-4' tall, semi-aquatic, emergent forb, stout, often in dense stands; stems angled with 4, 5, or more sides; roots woody
Leaves: 1 1/2"- 4 1/2" long, lance-like, stalkless, usually finely hairy, opposite or in whorls of 3
Flowers: purple to red, 6-parted, wrinkled, 1/2"-1" wide; inflorescence a 4"-16" tall, terminal, spike-like cluster (thryse) of small clumps of many flowers; blooms July-Sept.
Habitat: wet; meadows, shores, shallows
Invasiveness: Restricted Invasive - Eradicate!
Conservation Status: Introduced - naturalized; ecologically invasive and nuisance weed