Careful of those water plants

People are often advised to pull plants out of their ponds in the autumn.

Luckily for one of our supporters she looked a bit more closely at the plants in her pond before making with the rake.

The plants looked suspiciously interesting, and indeed so they turned out to be for her pond, on the hills not too far from Bolton, shelters one of Britain’s most endangered water plants, Red Pondweed.

There’s a nice picture of the plant here.

Red Pondweed (Potamogeton alpinus) is a plant most people wont see too often unless they go out into more remote parts of the countryside, and then its mostly in the north: in the south, pollution has largely eliminated it.


The distribution of Red Pondweed: red dots show the fairly recent records; the yellow dots show where it was found in the past (click the map for a higher quality image)


It’s one of the most rapidly declining water plants and now Red listed Oops – no, it’s simply declined a lot – in the UK because of this decline.

Predictably, it’s main requirement is clean, unpolluted, water,


One Response to “Careful of those water plants”

  1. Tristan Hatton-Ellis Says:

    I’m impressed! Red pondweed is not all that easy to grow in a garden pond as it likes quite a deep, rather peaty substrate. Perhaps it likes a little leaf fall too, and it certainly appreciates a bit of calcium in the water.

    If this was a bird, of course, this would be a BAP priority species and on all sorts of red lists. But as it’s a plant, it seems to get ignored until it is really rare. That’s a shame as I think it’s a good indicator of good quality habitat.

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