Parrot Feather, Parrotfeather Water Milfoil

Myriophyllum aquaticum

Family: Haloragaceae
Genus: Myriophyllum (my-ree-oh-FIL-um) (Info)
Species: aquaticum (a-KWA-ti-kum) (Info)
Synonym:Enydria aquatica
Synonym:Myriophyllum brasiliense
Synonym:Myriophyllum proserpinacoides


Ponds and Aquatics

Foliage Color:


Bloom Characteristics:

Unknown - Tell us

Water Requirements:

Very high moisture needs; suitable for bogs and water gardens

Where to Grow:

Unknown - Tell us


6-12 in. (15-30 cm)


3-6 in. (7-15 cm)


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)

USDA Zone 9a: to -6.6 C (20 F)

USDA Zone 9b: to -3.8 C (25 F)

USDA Zone 10a: to -1.1 C (30 F)

USDA Zone 10b: to 1.7 C (35 F)

USDA Zone 11: above 4.5 C (40 F)

Sun Exposure:

Sun to Partial Shade


Unknown - Tell us

Bloom Color:

Bright Yellow

Bloom Time:

Mid Summer


Grown for foliage

Other details:

May be a noxious weed or invasive

Soil pH requirements:

Unknown - Tell us

Patent Information:

Unknown - Tell us

Propagation Methods:

By dividing the rootball

From herbaceous stem cuttings

By stooling or mound layering

Seed Collecting:

Unknown - Tell us


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

Tuscaloosa, Alabama

San Jose, California

Stockton, California

Fort Myers, Florida

Hollywood, Florida

Orlando, Florida

Valdosta, Georgia

Barbourville, Kentucky

Houma, Louisiana

Lafayette, Louisiana

Columbia, Missouri

Averill Park, New York

Cincinnati, Ohio

Cleveland, Ohio

Glouster, Ohio

West Union, Ohio

Oklahoma City, Oklahoma

Portland, Oregon

Salem, Oregon

Corsicana, Texas

Deer Park, Texas

Huntsville, Texas

Spicewood, Texas

Spring Branch, Texas

show all

Gardeners' Notes:


On Feb 2, 2016, coriaceous from ROSLINDALE, MA wrote:

This plant can form dense mats on the surface of lakes and ponds, adversely affecting water quality, impeding navigation, and clogging irrigation pumps. It is easily spread on boat hulls and other recreational equipment.

Six states have prohibited the sale and cultivation of this invasive aquatic species. Its sale is also prohibited in the UK.

According to BONAP, it has naturalized in 30 states, including northern Idaho and western Montana. Clearly it is hardier than indicated above.

It's important to distinguish this species from Myriophyllum heterophyllum, which is native to much of N. America, though also invasive outside its native range.


On Aug 17, 2010, NanCcan from Columbia, MO wrote:

Love my parrot feather; my pond is small enough that I can pull it out by the handfuls mid summer when it is spreading too much. Before my pond was deep enough to stick a parrot feather root in the flower pot with the water lily 3' below the surface, I used to winter it over indoors in a large flower pot filled with water, a couple of baby goldfish, and just a handful of mud in the bottom of the pot. By spring, it would be spindly, but I'd just throw it back in the pond and it spread again every year!


On Apr 3, 2008, suzrich from Houma, LA wrote:

A problem anywhere other than controlled in a home pond. DO NOT let it get out into waterways. This is like the water hyacith. Lovely only when it's controlled. Very easy to grow. In my pond, it has overwintered with NO protection for 4 years


On Nov 5, 2007, kittiken from Huntsville, TX wrote:

parrots feather grows well in alkaline soil-tho i've never seen the blooms. each segment will regrow roots n the hotter n more humid it is, the faster it takes over. it is listed in library books for water gardens as a plant that steals oxygen from the water, rather than generating new oxygen. and it is a nuisance when it gets loose.


On Dec 27, 2006, frostweed from Josephine, Arlington, TX (Zone 8a) wrote:

Parrot Feather, Parrotfeather Water Milfoil Myriophyllum aquaticum is naturalized in Texas an other States and is considered an invasive noxious plant. It is prohibited in Texas.


On Feb 7, 2005, DiOhio from Corning, OH (Zone 6a) wrote:

I've had it winter over here in zone 6A as long as the roots were tucked in mud. I used to just let it float but noticed it does much better if planted. I planted some in a new lotus pool last summer and it went bonkers, sprawling way out beyond the edges of the pool. Any part that was out of the water is now mush.


On Feb 6, 2005, henryr10 from Cincinnati, OH (Zone 6b) wrote:

I'm not so sure of the Zone classification.
I have it growing in a barrel outdoors.
It is growing quite well after being totally frozen in the ice.
It maybe needs a Zone 5 or 6 classification at least.

Hey if it's a Vermont noxious weed........


On Aug 26, 2004, jdurha from North Clarendon, VT wrote:

FYI: This plant is a Class A Noxious Weed in the state of Vermont. Its movement, importation, sale, possession, cultivation and/or distrbution is prohibited with fines upto $1000.00 possible


On Jun 17, 2004, Wingnut from Spicewood, TX (Zone 8b) wrote:

I just love this plant! It floats around under the surface, feathery "heads" sticking up above the water. Have you ever tried pulling one of the "heads" below water? They don't get wet, but just kind of close up with silvery air bubbles trapped between the fronds. Neat!

These also normally close up at night. Interesting.


On Jan 4, 2003, easter0794 from Seffner, FL wrote:

This is a great plant. It keeps my pond naturally filtered. My gold fish breed in it. It grows very well in Florida. I've shared with lots of pond owners.