Water Lettuce floating water plant (Pistia stratiotes)

WATER LETTUCE

Water Lettuce (Pistia stratiotes) – As suggested by its name, water lettuce is a floating pond plant with fuzzy rosettes of leaves resembling heads of lettuce. Each leaf has deep ribs, parallel veins, scalloped edges, and no significant stems. Though not showy, the water lettuce plant does produce small white or pale green flowers hidden in the foliage. It blooms from late summer to late fall.
As it grows, water lettuce continues to provide more and more cover from heat and light. Not only that, but the roots extend pretty deep into the water. They fall into the water column, creating a curtain of soft tendrils for fish and inverts to move through.
Water lettuce can be used in water gardens, ponds, or containers both indoors and outdoors. This plant’s foliage only grows about 6 inches tall, but its dense root system under the water can grow up to 20 inches deep. It is a very fast grower once mature.

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