Duckweed Has an Amazing Growth Rate

If you live anywhere near still water, you probably already know how fast duckweed can spread until it covers a pond.   On average, one duckweed plant can grow one daughter plan per day, effectively doubling its population and surface coverage.  That one tiny plant can multiply to over 15,000 plants in a few weeks.  This is why duck weed can quickly get out of hand and overtake a small pond in a matter of days.  High levels of nutrients leads to even faster growth rates until nutrient levels drop.

Take control of duckweed in your pond as soon as you see it.  While some duckweed is a good thing, too much duckweed can cover a body of water and prevent light from reaching the bottom.  This harms other aquatic plants as well as fish and animals.   There are several methods to control duckweed, and often more than one method is needed to formulate an effective treatment plan.

How to Prevent Duckweed Growth

Excessive duckweed growth is a symptom of a nutrient imbalance in the water.  An overabundance of duckweed can usually be attributed to excess nutrients in the water, usually nitrogen and phosphorus.  These nutrients commonly end up in ponds and lakes as runoff from other places.

If you are going to control duckweed growth in your pond you absolutely need

to prevent this nutrient rich runoff from reaching it.  This can be done in several ways.   One way is to reduce or eliminating chemical treatments on land near the pond.   Another method of preventing these nutrients from reaching your pond is to use vegetative barriers around the pond that will soak up most or all of the the nutrients before they can reach the pond and fuel the growth of duckweed.

Common causes of nutrient rich water

  • chemical runoff from lawns, fertilizer, farms, golf courses, etc
  • septic system contamination
  • leaves, grass, vegetation, lawn debris
  • waterfowl and animal droppings

When duckweed covers a body of water it prevents sunlight from reaching the bottom and impairs the growth of algae and other underwater plants.  This can in turn lead to reduced oxygen levels and fish kills.  To prevent this, something must be done to control the growth of duckweed on a pond.

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