swamp morning-glory
Ipomoea aquatica Forssk.


Ipomoea aquatica is an annual herb. It can be a procumbent terrestrial in wetland areas or a floating aquatic. The thick hollow stems root at the nodes. Stems are slightly swollen above the nodes. It is native to temperate and tropical Asia, Africa, and Australia. It is used as a pot herb in some regions.
The petiolate leaves are hastate (halberd shaped) with the central lobe lanceolate. The basal lobes are much smaller and sometimes almost absent. Leaves are from 1.5-5 in. (4-12 cm) inches long.
The white to purple funnel shaped flowers are usually solitary. Sometimes a few flowers are held in a cyme. It can flower year round in tropical climates.
Ipomoea aquatica fruits are woody ovoid capsules.
Ecological Threat
Ipomoea aquatica can become an invasive problem in some tropical and temperate regions outside of its native range. Its common name, water spinach indicates that use as a food is one reason it has been spread to other parts of the world. It is listed as a noxious weed in the United States. Ipomoea aquatica has been reported in Florida, California, Hawaii and Washington. It has also been reported in Micronesia, French Polynesia and South America.

Selected Images


EDDMapS Distribution

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

State Regulated List

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

Taxonomic Rank

Kingdom: Plantae
Phylum: Magnoliophyta
Class: Magnoliopsida
Subclass: Asteridae
Order: Solanales
Family: Convolvulaceae
Genus: Ipomoea
Subject: Ipomoea aquatica Forssk.

Synonyms and Other Names

Other Common Names:
swamp morning-glory, Water spinach, Swamp-cabbage, Ipomoea reptans,chinese water spinach, swamp morning glory, swanp morningglory


Plants - Vines