BugwoodWiki Article

common water hyacinth
Eichhornia crassipes (Mart.) Solms

Overview

Appearance
Eichhornia crassipes is a free floating aquatic plant that has invaded aquatic areas throughout the eastern and southern portions of the United States. Plants can grow to 3 ft. (1 m) in height.
Foliage
The leaves are oval to elliptical, thick, up to 6 in. (15 cm) wide and waxy with spongy petioles. Leaves curve inward at the edges.
Flowers
The very showy blue-purple flowers are born on upright spikes. Each flower has six petals with the uppermost having a yellow patch.
Fruit
This plant reproduces chiefly by vegetative means.
Ecological Threat
Eichhornia crassipes invades lakes, ponds, rivers, marshes, and other types of wetland habitats. It can quickly form dense floating mats of vegetation (populations can double in size in two weeks!). These dense mats restrict light to the underwater environment, reduce the light availability for submersed plants and aquatic invertebrates, and deplete the oxygen levels. Eichhornia crassipes is native to South America and was first introduced as an ornamental into the United States in 1884 at the Cotton States Exposition in New Orleans.

Selected Images


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1391152

common water hyacinth
Eichhornia crassipes
Infestation
John D. Byrd
2132008
2132008

common water hyacinth
Eichhornia crassipes
Infestation
Chris Evans
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2132054

common water hyacinth
Eichhornia crassipes
Flower(s)
Wilfredo Robles
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2152079

common water hyacinth
Eichhornia crassipes
Flower(s)
Wendy VanDyk Evans
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5162094

common water hyacinth
Eichhornia crassipes
Infestation
Forest and Kim Starr
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5162095

common water hyacinth
Eichhornia crassipes
Plant(s)
Forest and Kim Starr
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5212026

common water hyacinth
Eichhornia crassipes
Plant(s)
Katherine Parys
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5271035

common water hyacinth
Eichhornia crassipes
Foliage
Leslie J. Mehrhoff
5271038
5271038

common water hyacinth
Eichhornia crassipes
Feature(s)
Leslie J. Mehrhoff
5275029
5275029

common water hyacinth
Eichhornia crassipes
Management
Tony Pernas
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5307035

common water hyacinth
Eichhornia crassipes
Seed(s)
Steve Hurst
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5344034

common water hyacinth
Eichhornia crassipes
Infestation
Karen Brown

Maps


EDDMapS Distribution - This map is incomplete and is based only on current site and county level reports made by experts, herbaria, and literature. For more information, visit www.eddmaps.org

EDDMapS Distribution

State Regulated List - This map identifies those states that list this species on their regulated list. For more information, visit Invasive.org

State Regulated List

Most Troublesome / Most Common Agricultural Weed List
This map identifies those states that consider this species either most troublesome or most common in at least one commodity. For more information, visit the MTMC project page.

State Regulated List
Legend
   No Data for this state
   Troublesome or Common weed in one or more crops

Taxonomic Rank

Kingdom: Plantae
Phylum: Magnoliophyta
Class: Liliopsida
Subclass: Liliidae
Order: Liliales
Family: Pontederiaceae
Genus: Eichhornia

Other System Links

Plants: EICR
Bayer: EICCR
GRIN: 318848
ITIS: 42623
NPDN Pest: PECABBA
NPDN Host: 31827

Synonyms and Other Names

Other Common Names:
floating water hyacinth

Related Scientific Names:

Eichhornia speciosa (Mart.) Solms(Synonym)
Piaropus crassipes (Mart.) Solms(Synonym)

Categories

Category: Aquatic