Alphabetical Plant Listing

Vallisneria americana (Water Celery)

American Eelgrass, Water Celery, Eelgrass, Tapegrass, Vallisneria asiatica, Vallisneria neotropicalis, Vallisneria spiralis, Vallisneria spiralis var. asiatica


Vallisneria americana (Water Celery) is an evergreen, submerged aquatic perennial with clusters of attractive ribbon-like leaves, about 1 in. wide (2.5 cm), that can grow up to 3 ft. long (90 cm), from stoloniferous runners. In shallow water, the leaves may reach and float on the surface. Blooming from mid-spring to late summer, this aquatic plant produces single white female flowers that grow to the water surface on very long stalks. After pollination, the flower stalks curl into spirals and pull the flowers underwater, where they give way to banana-like capsules containing many tiny seeds. Dispersal is achieved via these seeds as well as stolons. Water Celery is a fast grower, able to reach full height in two months of optimum growing conditions. Water Celery is a valuable plant. It is a beneficial oxygenating plant in wetland gardens and ponds where it filters water and reduces algae. It also provides shelter for small fishes and aquatic invertebrates. Finally, it is particularly attractive to wildlife. Diving ducks, like the canvasback (Aythya valisineria), consume huge amounts of the plant by plunging to the base of the wild celery to eat its rhizomes. Waterfowl and turtles also feed on the roots, tubers, shoots, and seeds. Water Celery requires little maintenance once established.

  • Performs best in full sun to light shade in aquatic substrate, like gravel or sand in water 12-48 in. deep (30-120 cm).
  • A fine choice for water gardens, ponds, or aquaria.
  • No serious pest or disease issues.
  • To prevent Water Celery from putting out runners, you may consider placing it in an aquatic basket.
  • Propagate by seed.
  • Native to Australia, Canada, the United States, Mexico, Guatemala, Honduras, Cuba, the Dominican Republic, Haiti, Venezuela, Iraq, China, Japan, Korea, India, Papua New Guinea, and the Philippines.

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Requirements

Hardiness 4 – 10
Plant Type Aquatic Plants
Exposure Full Sun, Partial Sun
Season of Interest Spring (Early,Mid,Late)
Summer (Early,Mid,Late)
Fall
Winter
Water Needs High
Maintenance Low
Soil Type Clay, Loam, Sand
Soil pH Alkaline, Neutral
Soil Drainage Poorly Drained
Characteristics Showy, Evergreen
Native Plants Australia, United States, Midwest, Illinois, Indiana, Iowa, Michigan, Minnesota, Missouri, North Dakota, Ohio, South Dakota, Wisconsin, Northeast, Connecticut, Delaware, Maine, Massachusetts, Maryland, New Hampshire, New Jersey, New York, Pennsylvania, Rhode Island, Vermont, Pacific Northwest, Idaho, Oregon, Washington, Southeast, Alabama, Florida, Georgia, Kentucky, Louisiana, Mississippi, North Carolina, South Carolina, Tennessee, Virginia, Southwest, Nevada, Arizona, New Mexico, Oklahoma, Texas
Tolerance Wet Soil
Garden Uses Ponds and Streams, Water Gardens

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Joan Carles Juarez, Shutterstock

While every effort has been made to describe these plants accurately, please keep in mind that height, bloom time, and color may differ in various climates. The description of these plants has been written based on numerous outside resources.


Requirements

Hardiness 4 – 10
Plant Type Aquatic Plants
Exposure Full Sun, Partial Sun
Season of Interest Spring (Early,Mid,Late)
Summer (Early,Mid,Late)
Fall
Winter
Water Needs High
Maintenance Low
Soil Type Clay, Loam, Sand
Soil pH Alkaline, Neutral
Soil Drainage Poorly Drained
Characteristics Showy, Evergreen
Native Plants Australia, United States, Midwest, Illinois, Indiana, Iowa, Michigan, Minnesota, Missouri, North Dakota, Ohio, South Dakota, Wisconsin, Northeast, Connecticut, Delaware, Maine, Massachusetts, Maryland, New Hampshire, New Jersey, New York, Pennsylvania, Rhode Island, Vermont, Pacific Northwest, Idaho, Oregon, Washington, Southeast, Alabama, Florida, Georgia, Kentucky, Louisiana, Mississippi, North Carolina, South Carolina, Tennessee, Virginia, Southwest, Nevada, Arizona, New Mexico, Oklahoma, Texas
Tolerance Wet Soil
Garden Uses Ponds and Streams, Water Gardens

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