Variable-Leaf Milfoil Myriophyllum heterophyllum

Rooted weed with long underwater and emergent leaves with dark red to reddish brown stems

  • English Name: Variable-Leaf Milfoil
  • Latin Name: Myriophyllum heterophyllum
  • Propogate: Seeds, Fragmentation
  • Symptoms: Underwater and emergent weed with leaves with dark red to reddish brown stems
  • Dangers: Can take over, not allowing other species to grow

The Character of the Variable-Leaf Milfoil Weeds

As weeds go, the Variable-Leaf Milfoil - scientific name, Myriophyllum Heterophyllum is good looking. Its stems are dark reddish brown and the flowers, which are more reddish, are held above the water by longish, also reddish brown, spikes that can get as long as six inches. That is about twice as long as other milfoils.

They are also kind of stylish. They are rooted and grow straight up, but as the stem approach the surface, they begin growing horizontally. It is those trials of stem that form huge mats that can cover the entire water body.

The Variable-Leaf Milfoil weeds are native to southern U.S, from Florida to Texas, but are now spread all the way north to North Dakota, Maine and parts of Canada. They prefer mucky fresh water up to eight feet deep but will also grow less abundantly in deeper water as well as in sandy or slightly acidic water. Like most weeds, they do not grow in fast-flowing water.

The Exploits of the Variable-Leaf Milfoil Weeds

The Variable-Leaf Milfoil is a perennial plant that survives the seasons, only shedding the foliage in the hard months. It reproduces through fragmentation, with stems breaking away to start new plants.

Because of their habit of spreading widely on the surface, the Variable-Leaf Milfoils are nuisance weeds. They form dense mats that crowd out other plants and congest waterways, making it impossible to fish, boat or swim. They are also difficult to eradicate using the normal techniques such as water level manipulations or mechanical removal because they invariably leave fragments behind that grow into new colonies.

A more effective method of eradicating Variable-Leaf Milfoil is to use the Lake Bottom Blanket. This is our lead weed control product that takes a unique approach to weed eradication. Rather than remove them from the water or risk contaminating the environment with chemicals, the Blanket simply blocks out sunlight. It is a 10 feet wide sheet of treated polythene that can be as long as ordered, that is weighted down into the water to within a foot or less off the water bed. It remains suspended in the water because it is made of material that is lighter than water. Fish and other aquatic life freely swim below and above the Blanket.

The Lake Bottom Blanket has already been used in over 400 lakes in over 29 states, in all instances returning a 100% weed killing rate within a few weeks. The Blanket is approved for use by the DNRs and DEPs of California, Nevada, New York, Connecticut, Massachusetts, Washington.

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