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Nature Water Plants

Photo Story: Water Plants


Nasturtium officinale

You find watercress in cold moving water --- springs, spring branches, and creeks. Here it's growing in water flowing from the spring at Hodgson Mill. It is a native plant. It has a peppery taste. People use it in salads and to garnish other foods.

This watercress is growing in water flowing from a beaver pond. Beavers who live in streams may carry diseases that can get into the water. Even clear cold running water can carry parasites like giardia. Wash watercress carefully before you eat it. 
Big Duckweed

Spirodela polyrhiza

This is the kind of duckweed found growing in the Bryant watershed. These tiny plants were floating in the water of an old oxbow slough of the Bryant. You find it year round in slow-moving water like ponds, and the sluggish edges of streams. It's a good food for wildlife.

Sources: Julian A.Steyermark, Flora of Missouri, 1981, The Iowa State University Press, p.671. 
Steven Foster and James A. Duke, Eastern/Central Medicinal Plants and Herbs, Peterson Field Guides, Houghton Mifflin Co., Boston/New York, 2000, pp 40. Text and photos by Peter Callaway.