Photo by Melody

PlantFiles: European Water Fern, Water Clover
Marsilea quadrifolia

Family: Marsileaceae
Genus: Marsilea (mar-SIL-ee-uh) (Info)
Species: quadrifolia (kwad-ree-FOH-lee-uh) (Info)

8 members have or want this plant for trade.


under 6 in. (15 cm)
6-12 in. (15-30 cm)

Unknown - Tell us

USDA Zone 6a: to -23.3 C (-10 F)
USDA Zone 6b: to -20.5 C (-5 F)
USDA Zone 7a: to -17.7 C (0 F)
USDA Zone 7b: to -14.9 C (5 F)
USDA Zone 8a: to -12.2 C (10 F)
USDA Zone 8b: to -9.4 C (15 F)

Sun Exposure:
Partial to Full Shade

Unknown - Tell us

Bloom Color:

Bloom Time:

Grown for foliage

Other details:
Very high moisture needs; suitable for bogs and water gardens

Soil pH requirements:
Unknown - Tell us

Patent Information:

Propagation Methods:
Unknown - Tell us

Seed Collecting:
N/A: plant does not set seed, flowers are sterile, or plants will not come true from seed

Click thumbnail
to view:

By Andrew60
Thumbnail #1 of Marsilea quadrifolia by Andrew60

By Zaragoza
Thumbnail #2 of Marsilea quadrifolia by Zaragoza

By chinabitbit
Thumbnail #3 of Marsilea quadrifolia by chinabitbit


1 positive
No neutrals
No negatives

Gardeners' Notes:

Positive darylmitchell On Oct 22, 2006, darylmitchell from Saskatoon, SK (Zone 3a) wrote:

I purchased these as a mid-summer replacement for other annuals that died. I discovered that a container without drainage holes was being continually flooded by an underground sprinkler head. Unable to move the pot, I tried this aquatic plant as an experiment. It worked! The roots were down in the waterlogged soil, while the stems and leaves remained above. The clover thrived until it was killed by frost.


This plant has been said to grow in the following regions:

Merced, California
Stamford, Connecticut
Chicago, Illinois
Indianapolis, Indiana
Cleveland, Ohio
Tulsa, Oklahoma

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