• Call (800) 479-6583
  • Mon-Fri 8am-5pm
  • |
  • Sat 9am-5pm

How To Control Water Lilywater lily

Aquatic plants like the water lily may be a desired ornamental plant in ponds but too many of them may become annoying especially because these invasive aquatic plants tend to spread quickly if left to their own devices. In some cases, water lilies can take over an entire pond’s surface, making it difficult for sunlight to pass through.

The water lily (also known as the white water lily or the fragrant water lily) is a perennial plant which is known for forming dense colonies wherever they grow. The leaves emerge on flexible stalks from rhizomes that are on the thicker and larger side. The leaves are more round than the heart-shaped ones you tend to see in drawings or cartoons and are a bright colored green. Water lilies are between 6 to 12 inches in diameter with the slit about 1/3 the length of the leaf. Leaves typically float on the water’s surface. Flowers arise on separate stalks, have brilliant white petals with yellow centers. The flowers may float or stick above the water and each opens in the morning and closes in the afternoon. The flowers are very fragrant. White water lily can spread from seeds or the rhizomes.

Water lilies are very useful in the natural ecosystem as they provide habitats for many micro and macro invertebrates. These invertebrates, in turn, are used as food by fish and other wildlife species (e.g. amphibians, reptiles, ducks, etc). After water lilies die, the organic matter they give off through decomposition also provide food to other aquatic animals.  Deer, beaver, muskrat, nutria and other rodents also consume the leaves and rhizomes of white water lily, while the seeds are eaten by ducks.

As beneficial and beautiful as they are, these water lilies are also very troublesome. If you have water lilies in abundance on your property and need them gone, Solutions Pest and Lawn can help you through our selection of aquatic herbicides.

How To Get Rid of Water Lilies: 3 Step Solutions

Step 1: All good aquatic weed control programs should start with a detailed survey of the body of water where the cattail resides before proceeding with chemical treatments. You wouldn’t want to harm any beneficial desired vegetation, fishes and other aquatic creatures. This would also be a good time to test the pH of the water. What you’re hoping for is a pH level below 8. Water with an 8 or higher pH level hurts the effectiveness of aquatic herbicides.

Step 2: Once you have carefully analyzed your pond and lake, you can then move on to selecting a treatment method to manage the water lilies. At Solutions Pest and Lawn we have a large selection of different aquatic herbicides which come in both liquid or granular forms.  While both types are effective in treating water lilies, we recommend a granular aquatic herbicide.These heavier granules can be applied with a hand spreader and will sink directly onto the weed beds. What you select is entirely up to your personal preference. You will see our recommendations below.

Step 3: Apply the selected herbicide to your pond or lake during ideal temperatures and following the instructions carefully on the product label of the herbicide you chose. Timing is important when treating water lily as it is recommended to spray them between late July and first frost, when the plant is actively growing. Depending on the size of your pond or lake, you may need to conduct treatment in sections, waiting 2 weeks between treatments until you’ve treated the entire body of water. A reapplication may be necessary 21 days after the initial application is complete.  There is a more detailed guide on applying weeds in our Knowledge base.

Browse our water lily control products below. If you need any assistance with your order or any DIY advice, you can contact us directly via email, live chat or by phone and we will be happy to answer any questions you have.

Contact Us