Curlyleaf Pondweed Potamogeton crispus

Mass of flattened, bushy, linear or oblong translucent leaves with wavy edges and short spiked of flowers above the water

  • English Name: Curlyleaf Pondweed
  • Latin Name: Potamogeton crispus
  • Propogate: Seeds
  • Symptoms: Mass of flattened translucent leaves with wavy edges and short spiked of flowers above the water
  • Dangers: Clogs waterways, increases algae, inhibiting aquatic plants

The European water weed of America

Curly Leaf Pondweed - scientific name, Potamogeton Crispus - is not native to the US although it is now common across the country. The first specimens are believed to have been brought by European immigrants in the 1880s, possibly as aquarium plants. The weed grows entirely underwater and is noticeable by the profusion of those crisp, wavy leaves that range from olive green to translucent. The tiny flowers are the only part of the plant that rises above the water on stalks. Curly Leaf Pondweeds are also quite organized. They grow through all seasons but sprout new plants mostly in late fall, then grow throughout winter and reach maturity in late spring or early summer - when there is better sunlight for flowering and seeding. And they do not rely only on seeds to multiply; they also grow new shoots from creeping rhizomes - underground stem that grow horizontally to take on new territory.

Curlyleaf Pondweed Control

Unlike other immigrant weeds, Curly leaf Pondweeds are eaten by many American animals, which helps to keep them in check. Compared to other weeds, they are not particularly intrusive. But they are weeds and can get quite bushy and overwhelm fish habitats, besides also being a problem to fishing and recreation. They are in fact quite a nuisance in parts of the US, particularly the mid west. Curly leaf Pondweeds are also controlled by herbicides and grass carps. But these two techniques are usually limited, herbicides because of local regulations in some parts of the country and the grass carps by their tendency to take long before noticeably reducing the amount of weed in a particular area. A rarer technique is to use non-toxic dyes or colorants as a method of cutting out the supply of sunlight to the weeds. The downside is that dyes may interfere with the natural environment by disrupting the natural food chain.

Controlling Curly Leaf Pondweed with the Lake Bottom Blanket

An alternative technique is to combine the environment friendly advantage of physical weed removal with the scientific logic of killing weeds by denying them sunlight. That is what our lead weed control product, the Lake Bottom Blanket, does. The LBB, as we more commonly call it, is a specially formulated polythene sheet - about 10 feet wide and as long as required - that is weighted down into water. It is made of lighter-than-water material so as to float slightly off the bottom of the lake or dam, ensuring fish and other aquatic life are able to move freely below and above the blanket. It kills the weeds, down to the roots, by totally blocking out sunlight. The Blanket is currently the only weed control product that totally destroys water weeds. In the over 400 lakes in over 29 states where it has been used, it has chalked a 100% killing rate within four weeks of being installed. The Lake Bottom Blanket is approved for use by the DNR's and DEP's of California, Nevada, New York, Connecticut, Massachusetts and Washington. Is there something about water weeds that you would like to know? Please feel free to get in touch with us any time. Contact us here