Spirodela polyrrhiza - (L.)Schleid.
Common Name Great Duckweed, Common duckmeat
Family Lemnaceae
USDA hardiness 4-8
Known Hazards None known
Habitats Still water in ditches and ponds[17]. Eutrophic, quiet waters, in temperate to tropical regions[270].
Range Europe, including Britain, south and east from Scandanavia to N. Africa and Asia. America, Australia
Edibility Rating  
Other Uses  
Weed Potential No
Medicinal Rating  
Fully Hardy Water Plants Full sun

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Spirodela polyrrhiza Great Duckweed, Common duckmeat

Spirodela polyrrhiza Great Duckweed, Common duckmeat
USDA-NRCS PLANTS Database / Britton, N.L., and A. Brown. 1913. An illustrated flora of the northern United States, Canada and the British Possessions. 3 vols. Charles Scribner's Sons, New York. Vol. 1
Physical Characteristics
Spirodela polyrrhiza is a PERENNIAL at a fast rate.
It is hardy to zone (UK) 5. It is in flower in July. The flowers are monoecious (individual flowers are either male or female, but both sexes can be found on the same plant)Suitable for: light (sandy), medium (loamy) and heavy (clay) soils. Suitable pH: acid, neutral and basic (alkaline) soils. It cannot grow in the shade. It can grow in water.

Lemna polyrhiza

Edible Uses
Edible Parts: Leaves.
Edible Uses:

The plant is sometimes used as a food[177, 183]. No more details are given.
Medicinal Uses

Plants For A Future can not take any responsibility for any adverse effects from the use of plants. Always seek advice from a professional before using a plant medicinally.

Antipruritic;  Antipyretic;  Cardiotonic;  Carminative;  Diaphoretic;  Diuretic.

The whole plant is antipruritic, antipyretic, cardiotonic, carminative, diaphoretic, diuretic[147, 176, 218]. It stimulates the appearance of measles rash[147, 176]. It is used in the treatment of colds, measles, oedema and difficulty in urination[176].


Other Uses
None known
Cultivation details
Requires a sunny position in still water that is rich in nitrates and lime[200]. A very small plant without differentiation into various parts such as leaf, stem etc (they are called Thalli), it is 8mm in diameter and often forming a mat on the water surface and perennating by means of buds (turions) that sink in autumn and rise to the surface in spring. The so-called rootcap (really only an apical swelling), has a higher specific gravity than any other part of the plant, righting capsized individuals[200]. The plant rarely flowers, spreading mainly by vegetative means[270].
The plant divides freely in the growing season and does not need help.
Other Names
Found In
Weed Potential

Right plant wrong place. We are currently updating this section. Please note that a plant may be invasive in one area but may not in your area so it’s worth checking.

Conservation Status
IUCN Red List of Threatened Plants Status :
Related Plants


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Subject : Spirodela polyrrhiza  

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