Spirodela polyrhiza 1.2.Grow!

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GTIN: 5703249000729
Brand: Tropica
EAN: 5703249000729Availability: 2 in stock
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Spirodela polyrhiza: The Tiny Titan of the Surface

Spirodela polyrhiza, often called greater duckweed or common duckmeat, is a fascinating little plant that thrives on the surface of freshwater habitats. Despite its diminutive size, this fast-growing (high growth rate) native of North America plays a significant role in the health and balance of ponds and slow-moving bodies of water.

Spirodela polyrhiza is a free-floating plant, forming dense colonies that create a green, sometimes reddish, mat across the water’s surface. Each individual plant resembles a smooth, round, flat disc, typically measuring between 0.5 and 1.0 cm in width. While the upper surface boasts a vibrant green hue, with occasional reddish accents, the underside is a striking deep red. Though tiny, these little discs house a surprising complexity. Each plant possesses several minute roots that dangle beneath the surface, helping it absorb nutrients from the water. Additionally, a small pouch nestled within the plant body contains both male and female flowers, allowing for self-pollination and ensuring the continued growth of the colony.

Spirodela polyrhiza exhibits a remarkable adaptation for surviving harsh winter conditions. As temperatures drop in the fall, the top portion of the plant dies back. However, nature has equipped it with a clever survival strategy. Before succumbing to the cold, the plant produces tiny structures called turions. These dense, bud-like structures sink to the bottom of the water body, entering a dormant phase. When spring arrives, and water temperatures rise above 15°C, the turions awaken from their slumber and germinate, giving rise to new Spirodela plants and restarting the life cycle.

Beyond its unique biology, Spirodela polyrhiza offers a multitude of benefits to the ecosystem. The dense mat it forms shades the water below, helping to suppress the growth of algae that thrive in direct sunlight. Additionally, these tiny plants act as natural filters, absorbing excess nutrients from the water column. This nutrient uptake helps maintain a healthy balance and reduces the risk of excessive algae blooms.

Furthermore, the floating mat created by Spirodela polyrhiza provides a valuable refuge for fish. Shy or nervous fish species can utilize the cover of the duckweed to avoid predators or simply find a peaceful space to rest. This makes Spirodela polyrhiza a welcome addition to aquariums that house a variety of fish with varying temperaments.

Spirodela polyrhiza, despite its small size, plays a vital role in the health and balance of freshwater habitats. From providing shade and filtering nutrients to offering a safe haven for fish, this tiny titan of the surface is a testament to the ingenuity of nature.

For more information, please see our GUIDES section.

Additional information

Weight 0.1 kg


Place of origin

North America