I'm new to this forum. On another (water gardening) forum we got to discussing the policy on prohibited plants like Water Hyacinths, Water Lettuce, etc. I know stores are prohibited sales but does this apply to trade? On the other forum we came to the conclusion that it's legal provided you don't release into wild. But I'm not sure what the rules on those things are here. I couldn't find anything in rules list in the trade section. I want to be safe than sorry. I don't want to get my self the trader or this community in trouble.
I do think some trade things like water hyacinths and water lettuce in the prohibited areas and others do not. I think it comes down to whether one feels comfortable with it or not. I know some of our Florida members do have water hyacinth and seem to know where to get them.
I'm a Florida member. I got my water hyacinths from the irrigation canal that flows 500 feet away from my house. I keep them in a plastic bucket and, as a matter of fact, they are in bloom right now. Somebody was commenting on them just yesterday. The blooms are very attractive. I have read somewhere that they had been introduced here because of that.
Water hyacinths, as most everyone knows, are notorious invasives. Mine reproduce like crazy. When I have too many, I remove them from the water's surface and let them dry out on the cement slab in full sun. They survive for about 5 to 7 days out of the water. When they are crispy dry, I burn them.
Florida is stuck with water hyacinths choking waterways, canals and every freshwater body imaginable. The damage has been done in the late 1800s. It is, for all intents and purposes, irreparable. I would not ship water hyacinths to anyone; no matter how much the other party pleaded. For me, it's a question of personal ethics; not a legal technicality. I even cut off their bloom stalks, so the plant doesn't produce seeds that could be eaten by birds and transferred back into our environment.
That stuff reproduced at light speed rates. I swear it produced plantets in the ziploc bag I used to carry it home. I haven't seen any in a long while. I got it at auction from an aquarium society where I was a member. All in all, I think it cost me $1. When it came home, I had maybe a cupfull - no more than that. I dropped that into the pond and within a month, it had spread to cover the whole surface. How's that for an aggressive invasive. It wasn't on any list of noxious and/or invasive plants in Canada and I had no idea how prolific it was. Left to its own devices, it looked like a green carpet was floating at the surface of the water. I used to "harvest" it with a rake and throw it into the compost bin. Thankfully, our Canadian winter took care of that problem for me.
Salvinia is also on the list of Texas prohibited plants.
Among my list of floating plants
Floating sensitive plant.
I know alot but Duckweed and Azolla make good fish food. Water Hyacinth and lettuce are good filters. Frogbit is good for my smaller ponds to shallow for water lilier. Frogbit looks like miniature water lilies.
Water hyacinths are beautiful when blooming. I had them in my contained koi pond and loved them. Last year when we have unusually cold (and below freezing) temps, I lost all of them. Probably the reason they aren't a concern in the northern states. I'm trying to score a few more for my pond, my koi used their long roots to spawn on...but it started out so dry here, that I haven't seen them this year. The main thing is to be responsible, if you contain it...fine. If you don't want it anymore, kill it.
I found two online stores that did not prohibit sales of water hyacinth to TX. In my smallish pond it does not do terribly well and I think its the temps. I have a small multihead clump right now. Cant say about how well water lettuce does as that one seems to be harder to get down here.
I was told they won't overwinter here either. Guess I'll put a couple in a bucket and bring them inside for the winter. If not theres plenty floating around in our lakes even tho they aren't supposed to be there.