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DescriptionChara canescens grows up to 30 cm in height. It has regular whorls of slender cylindrical branches, and will often be encrusted with carbonate of lime. It is densely covered in spines, giving it a furry appearance. It is anchored in mud or silt my translucent rhizoids and can often give out an unpleasant odour. It is usually olive green in colour.
Chara canescence can be distinguished from other stoneworts, including Chara pendunculata and Chara curta, by the gradual decrease in internode length throughout the stem and by all the bracts in each whorl being equal in length (Stewart & Church, 1992).
Only female plants occur in northern Europe and the species reproduces parthenogenetically (Bryant & Stewart, 2002).