The Nonindigenous Occurrences section of the NAS species profiles has a new structure. The section is now dynamically updated from the NAS database to ensure that it contains the most current and accurate information. Occurrences are summarized in Table 1, alphabetically by state, with years of earliest and most recent observations, and the tally and names of drainages where the species was observed. The table contains hyperlinks to collections tables of specimens based on the states, years, and drainages selected. References to specimens that were not obtained through sighting reports and personal communications are found through the hyperlink in the Table 1 caption or through the individual specimens linked in the collections tables.

Eichhornia paniculata
Eichhornia paniculata
(Brazilian water hyacinth)

Copyright Info
Eichhornia paniculata (Spreng.) Solms

Common name: Brazilian water hyacinth

Synonyms and Other Names: Piaropus paniculatus (Spreng.) Small

Taxonomy: available through www.itis.govITIS logo

Identification: According to Barrett and Husband (1997) and CABI.org:

Habit: annual or short-lived perennial wetland emergent monocot

Stems/roots: rooted in mud in shallow water

Leaves: Submersed sessile leaves form a basal rosette and are linear to oblanceolate. Petiolate leaves are above the water surface with a cordate blade, acuminate to acute at the tip. Petiolate leaf blades grow 7.5-15 cm long, 3.5 – 9 cm wide, and the petiole may be up to 60 cm long.?

Flowers: flowers grow on separate flowering stalks in a panicle with 5-100 flowers developing over several days. The peduncle is sparsely glandular-pubescent to glabrous, 11.5-17.5 cm long; spathe linear, 13-35 mm long, the apex acuminate. Flowers are blue, white or lilac.

Fruits/seeds: Seeds form in capsules 6-8mm long. Seeds are 0.6-1.0 mm long, 0.6-0.8 mm wide with 10-12 longitudinal wings

Look-a-likes: The more common?E. crassipes?has flowers that grow in a spike rather than a paniculate inflorescence, and?E. crassipes?plants are typically free floating instead of rooted in mud. The petioles are inflated unlike in?E. paniculata.?Eichhornia azurea?differs from?E. paniculata?in floral structure with fewer flowers in spikes and it has fan-like submersed leaves (Barrett, 1989;?Q-Bank, 2016).

Native Range:
Hydrologic Unit Codes (HUCs) Explained
Interactive maps: Point Distribution Maps

Nonindigenous Occurrences:

Table 1. States with nonindigenous occurrences, the earliest and latest observations in each state, and the tally and names of HUCs with observations†. Names and dates are hyperlinked to their relevant specimen records. The list of references for all nonindigenous occurrences of Eichhornia paniculata are found here.

StateFirst ObservedLast ObservedTotal HUCs with observations†HUCs with observations†
FL190719071Sarasota Bay

Table last updated 10/17/2021

† Populations may not be currently present.

Ecology: Habitat: ephemeral pools, ditches and low-lying fields

Reproduction and spread: by seed dispersed by waterfowl and livestock in native range

Means of Introduction: probably introduced as a contaminant in shipping of plants or produce, as it was collected from a wet ditch by a railroad near a port in Florida (New York Botanical Garden, 2016).

Status: Eradicated in: Florida

Impact of Introduction: Eichhornia paniculata is listed as a prohibited aquatic plant in Florida along with all species of Eichhornia (USDA-NRCS, 2016), because of the invasive nature of other species in the Genus and is listed as an agricultural weed of rice fields in Jamaica and Cuba (Barrett, 2011).

Remarks: Eichhornia paniculata in Bolivia has been mis-identified as Eichhornia meyeri (eFloras.org). Populations in Brazil occupy ephemeral patches that often contain <100 individuals per site (Husband and Barrett 1998).

Other Resources:

Author: Anemaet, E.R.

Revision Date: 6/4/2021

Citation Information:
Anemaet, E.R., 2021, Eichhornia paniculata (Spreng.) Solms: U.S. Geological Survey, Nonindigenous Aquatic Species Database, Gainesville, FL, https://nas.er.usgs.gov/queries/FactSheet.aspx?SpeciesID=2999, Revision Date: 6/4/2021, Access Date: 10/17/2021

This information is preliminary or provisional and is subject to revision. It is being provided to meet the need for timely best science. The information has not received final approval by the U.S. Geological Survey (USGS) and is provided on the condition that neither the USGS nor the U.S. Government shall be held liable for any damages resulting from the authorized or unauthorized use of the information.


The data represented on this site vary in accuracy, scale, completeness, extent of coverage and origin. It is the user's responsibility to use these data consistent with their intended purpose and within stated limitations. We highly recommend reviewing metadata files prior to interpreting these data.

Citation information: U.S. Geological Survey. [2021]. Nonindigenous Aquatic Species Database. Gainesville, Florida. Accessed [10/17/2021].

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