Written by Industry Expert, Emily Mayer, Aquatic Biologist
Hydrilla (Hydrilla verticillata) is a highly invasive aquatic plant that is plaguing freshwater ecosystems in the US, particularly in the South, Southeast, Mid-Atlantic and (most recently) the Northeast. Hydrilla has several distinguishing characteristics. Its small leaves are arranged in whorls of three to eight, and these leaves are heavily serrated and can be seen without the aid of magnification. Reproduction typically occurs through fragmentation, although hydrilla also produces tubers, which are subterranean
Hydrilla forms dense mats at the surface of lakes and ponds, which limits recreational use and diminishes the aesthetic appeal of the waterbody. This invasive plant also out-competes native aquatic plant species, reducing biodiversity and negatively impacting water quality. Hydrilla also serves as a host for toxic cyanobacteria (Aetokthonos
There are many management options to help control hydrilla; however, studies show that long-term management targeting tuber bank depletion is needed for successful eradication.
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Emily Mayer is an Aquatic Biologist based out of SOLitude's office in Hackettstown, New Jersey. As a member of SOLitude's Biology team, she provides clients with an array of lake and pond management solutions to help them prevent water quality problems and maintain