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Fanwort, known commonly by its
scientific name Cabomba caroliniana, is a non-native
aquatic invasive species introduced from South America. This plant
is listed as a banned invasive and is listed as a noxious weed in
several other U.S. states.
While the most common method of
introduction is the dumping of old aquarium plants,
Cabomba is also capable of rapidly spreading on its own by
stem fragments or rhizomes.
Cabomba is an extremely competitive and persistent
plant capable of forming dense mats that crowd out native plants.
Once established, the plant can clog waterways, disrupting fishing
In cases of severe infestation, Cabomba can raise water
levels to the point of overflow.
Fanwort is multi-branched submerged perennial plant except for a
few small (1/2 - 1 1/4 inches long) alternately arranged elongated
floating leaves. The submerged leaves are opposite, attached by a
single petiole, but above the petiole form a finely divided
"fan-shaped" leaf. Fanwort has a small (1/2 to 3/4 inch diameter)
white to pink flower which arises from the tip of the stem and
stands slightly above the water surface.
A subspecies of Cabomba (Purple
fanwort - Cabomba pulcherrima) has a purple appearance
instead of green.
Look for slightly flattened stems that arise from the base of
the plant. Cabomba's flowers have three petals that are pink to
yellow, and may be spotted. Each flower is approximately 10mm
A. Plants must be present to treat. Water
temperatures should exceed sixty degrees Fahrenheit.
A. One to two treatments per season is
A. Generally within twelve to sixteen day
things will be cleared up.
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