- Approximate size: 45cm (18 inches) across
- Flowering time: June to August
- Flower colour: White
This impressive British native floating plant consists of a large rosette of serrated, spiky leaves, which look a little like those of an aloe or a spider plant. Young plants have softer, more bushy leaves, and these stiffen as the plant matures. It floats with the top of its leaves emerging from the water, and its crown just submerged. It has no true roots. One or two small white flowers are borne on long thin erect stems in summer, and new plants are produced on runners from the main plant. In the winter the leaves soften and the plant sinks to the bottom of the pond, returning to the surface as temperatures rise in early summer. For this reason we do not sell water soldiers in the cold months of the year, when they would naturally be resting on the bottom.
Not recommended for ponds in Ireland, where it is not native.
You will receive a young plant, as shown in the third picture above. This is because it is impractical to send adult water soldiers by mail order, due to their large size and stiff leaves.
If designing a planting scheme, we recommend approximately 1 Stratiotes aloides plant per square foot of water surface. Read more here on how to pot and care for your plant.