Eichhornia: Greenhouse Plants
C – cool, minimum of 7°C (45°F) / W – warm, minimum of 13°C (55°F) / T – tropical, minimum of 18°C (65°F)
Eichhornia crassipes is the Water Hyacinth which has become a menace in tropical waterways, clogging the surface of the water and spreading into a thick mat by way of its rhizomes. It is a pity that these plants are shy of flowering in captivity as they are a beautiful azure blue. How it behaves will depend on the temperature and whether or not it is floating. Floating plants have very inflated petioles (leaf stalks) and long deep purple roots which fish love to lay their eggs in. However, if the plants are growing close to the edge of water and can root into the side the petioles are longer and thinner. Although it is perfectly possible to grow this plant outside during summer and on cooler ponds indoors it will never take off and spread itself into the dense mat that encourages flowering unless it is growing on a tropical pool. If the temperature of the greenhouse is below 4°C (40°F) in winter I would pot the plant up into a well-drained loamto overwinter.