Water Hyacinth

May 3, 2013 12:00 am
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It’s May and the water hyacinth is in! This great floating pond plant should be on every gardeners list of plants to have, whether you have a pond or not. These little plants will grow in any stagnant or slow moving water as long as they get at least 4 hour of sun a day. The foliage is as interesting as plants get and they’ll bloom with beautiful purple flowers through most of the summer. They’re a great, easy to grow ornamental that will grow in a water bowl, a pond or water feature, or in a decorative jar on your patio table.

In a pond is where water hyacinth will really shine. It rapidly reproduces and filters the harmful ammonia out of the pond water. It blocks sunlight, controlling algae growth. It provides cover for larger fish and the roots act as a nursery for baby fish. It naturally oxygenates the water. Most importantly, it’s beautiful.

Since water hyacinth will reproduce so rapidly, it has a tendency to over-take ponds. The good news is that you can scoop out what you don’t want and add it directly to your compost pile. It breaks down rapidly and adds large amounts of nitrogen to your mulch. Just make sure you keep it out of natural waters. Although water hyacinth will die off in the winter, it is still considered invasive and can do a lot of damage to our natural waters in just one summer.