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Duckweed – Lemnoideae
Duck Weed is the perfect addition to ponds and lakes. It has tiny leaves 1/16th to 1/8th in inch and a single root. This flowering plant goes by two other names, bayroot and water lens. It lives on or just below freshwater surfaces, preferring still water. Their frond structure adds interest while they provide an important food source for attracted waterfowl. This rapidly growing plant makes a lovely habitat for bullfrogs and for fish.
Duck Weed also is known as water lens or bayroot, is an aquatic plant that floats on the surface of still or slow-moving bodies of water. They are the smallest flowering plants, and they are very simple in structure, lacking both stems and leaves. Duckweed flourishes in aquatic conditions associated with wetlands, and they need fertile, eutrophic conditions to thrive. Duckweed can live in chilly conditions, though it is sensitive to frost. It survives freezing conditions, which would otherwise be lethal, as dormant turions or seeds, which lie at the bottom of ponds. Silt and mud cover the seeds, protecting them until ideal conditions arise again. Duckweed commonly grows at a rapid pace across nutrient-rich, quiet bodies of water in dense colonies through asexual budding. A colony of duckweed can double in size in under a day depending on the environment, and it is common for multiple species of duckweed to inhabit the same territory. Duckweed grows best in water rich with nitrogen and phosphate.
Duck Weed acts as a natural water filter, and many farms use duckweed to clean the water by absorbing the chemicals left by pigs, cows, and chickens. It prevents both the growth of algae and mosquito colonies and serves as a home for many pond water species. It also acts like a pond cover, reducing the amount of water vapor produced. Also, duckweed is food for many animals. As the name implies, duckweed is an essential source of food for many waterfowl such as ducks, but many fish, insects, and microorganisms feed on the nutritious plant. Duckweed also serves as a source of nutrition for humans, as people in some parts of Southeast Asia regularly eat the plant.