Water Lettuce – 5 ways to display

I have a pond.

My pond has plants.

I fertilized those plants and …

those plants had babies.  Lots of em.

Yup.  I have a classic case of  Octopond.

So ….

5 ways to display Water Lettuce


cylinder vases



round bowl



low rectangular vase



narrow necked vase


candy dish


Yes, the return of the Dollarama candy dish.  Guess we can turn this list into 11.

Water Lettuce are popular pond plants because they allow shade and cover.  The shade helps the pond maintain good health and cover helps the fish maintain good health.  Nothing makes a fish less healthy than being ripped apart by a raccoon who can just reach into the pond and grab Nemo.

In the heat, water lettuce have a tendency to get quite amorous.  Water lettuce are “loose”, if I may be so bold.  They reproduce like polygamists but are significantly more attractive.    You will never see a bad hair-do on a Water lettuce.

If your pond is overrun with Water Lettuce, bring ’em inside.  They don’t last incredibly long, and their water starts to stink after a few days (could be a symptom of their “loose” behaviour for all I know) but they look GREAT.

I love the feathery roots so my preference is to put the Water lettuce in clear vessels.

You can buy Water lettuce at any pond supply or garden centre in the summer.  They run between $3 and $5 for large ones but if you buy them in July or August chances are they’ll be on sale.  And like I mentioned … they’re a bit on the “friendly” side, so if you only buy 2, you’ll soon have 12. Barring the invention of a pond prophylactic.


  1. shannon@bakeandbloom.com says:

    I love these, I have never seen them before. Maybe we don’t have them in Australia?

    • Karen says:

      Hi Shannon! Mmm … they’re only sold in places where they sell pond stuff. Not flower shops. Check around … I’d bet you can find them. I love them too … they’re really fun.

    • Joanna says:

      Yes we do have them downunder
      But ….

      they are considered baddies

      “Water lettuce (Pistia stratiotes) is listed as noxious in class 1 throughout NSW, meaning the Local Control Authority (usually Council) must be notified immediately if an infestation is discovered, the plant must be eradicated and the site kept free of the weed. It cannot be sold or
      propagated or knowingly distributed.”

      so you’d have to buy them on the black market and never ever let them escape, or feed after dark

      • shannon@bakeandbloom.com says:

        lol oh no I don’t think I will aquire myself some illegal water lettuce. Maybe I can make something similar with ornimenal kale?

        • Karen says:

          “Deborah” says you can buy them in Melbourne so there seems to be some misinformation somewhere! Look into it further and see if you can find them. Otherwise I bet you could do something similar with kale like you say. But it’s really the feathery roots that make the water lettuce so great. Hmm … check into it. I bet you can find a few. Deborah says so!

        • Jonathon says:

          Water lettuce (Pistia stratiotes) yes I have them, Water Lilies Hardy & Tropical as well

    • Deborah Wall says:

      These look fantastic.

      I live in Melbourne and you can buy them down here from the local gardening centre.

      I’ve been itching to get some but this has given me the push I needed.

      Love the blog.

  2. Pam'a says:

    You can find them in any nursery that sells things for ponds, but I don’t know if you Aussies are as nutty about that pastime as we are up north…

    That said, I agree, Karen– The roots ARE cool. And I’ll bet if you changed the water every week or so, they’d last a good long time inside. In fact, it might look real cool if you put a FISH in the bottom!

    Oh. Wait. Sore subject…

    • Karen says:

      Yes! Sore subject. The plants really don’t last long indoors because they need a good deal of natural sunlight. If they’re beside a bright window they might last longer. And I think you’d need to change the water every couple of days. Stink-fest.

  3. I love them in the clear vases! And dang-it,your Dollar-Rama rocks compared to my Dollar General. Tell them to open some stores down south…I know that they will listen to you 🙂

  4. Devin says:

    Hi Karen!

    I just wanted to say that I LOVE your blog! Even when the posts are about things that I couldn’t care about in the least. Like this one. I don’t have a pond. I don’t even have a backyard. Hell, I hardly even have any sunlight in my apartment. Nonetheless I look forward to reading your new post every morning at work. And they never dissapoint. I especially love the ones about Dollarama. I once got kicked out of a dollarama because they were closing. As they were turning off the lights on me I realized that I somehow spent 3 hours there! Ok, enought of my life story…

    Your blog = My favorite

    • Karen says:

      Thanks Devin! I kindda like my blog too. I’m sure if you started one, I’d like it. Yeah … Dollarama … as I have often said, it’s the happiest place on earth!

  5. Devin says:

    Oh and, in case your wondering.. Yes, that creepy stalker from Montreal who checks your blog about 50 times a day, that would be me.

  6. dana says:

    Oh my, I particularly love #4. Just my style. Lovely, lovely arrangements!

  7. Maven Koesler says:

    You can do the same with Water Hyacinth (Eichornia crassipes) in the US. It’s considered invasive too, and is banned in certain states, but available in others.

  8. Zina says:

    Okay. I may have to put a half barrel on the deck for some of these…Karen! Is there something more creative and stylish than a halfbarrel that doesn’t cost a month’s salary?

    • Karen says:

      Hey Zina! This is the perfect time for this! I kindda like the half barrels, in a natural looking garden. But at this time of year you can get any type of ceramic or fibre planter for 40 – 60% off at a garden centre! A tall black rectangular planter would look great filled with water and these water lettuce filling in the top of it. Either that or a big low bowl shaped ceramic planter. You should be able to pick either one of these things up at a garden centre for a reasonable price (if they’re on sale)! Send me a pic. if you do it! – karen

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