Aldrovanda vesiculosa


Ease to Grow: Moderate to Challenging
Dormancy: Yes
Native Range: Peaty Wetlands of Europe, Africa, Asia, and Australia
Zones: 5-9 (4-10)

The aquatic Waterwheel Plant, Aldrovanda vesiculosa, is an aquatic, free-floating, rootless carnivorous plant of boggy waters. The rope-like plant contains successive whorls of bristly traps.  Each trap shaped like a small, wide-mouth clam.  There are 4-9 traps per whorl, and each whorl is about 1/2" round, giving the plant a soft rope like appearance. Aldrovanda prefers warm, shallow (8-20"), peaty, dark tea-colored waters rich in tannins and low in nutrients.  It grows best in the sunny partial cover amongst salvinia, water lilies and other emergent plants. The white flowers are small, and on short stalks in late summer. Seeds are rare. Reproduction is typically vegetative. It is a perennial and survives freezing by forming turions (winter buds for aquatics). This variety is native to Japan and is winter hardy. Shipped as a small sprig (or turion in cold weather) in water. Sprigs grow rapidly in good conditions.

The genus is monotypic with only one species.  Similar to the classification of the Venus Flytrap (1 genus, 1 species). Aldrovanda can be considered a living fossil, since its lineage dates back to the Tertiary, tens of millions of years ago. Aldrovanda vesiculosa var. rubescens is a red form that occurs from Australia, and single locations in Botswana and Hungary.  Cultures may contain small amounts of other aquatic plants.

Photographs are representative of species and not the specific Waterwheel carnivorous plant for sale. In it's dormant season, it will be shipped as a dormant turion.

Height: 1", Length: 2-10+"
Plant Type: Perennial, cold temperate
Soil: Peaty bog water, dark tea color
Light: Bright to partial bright indoors, full sun to dappled shade outdoors.
Use: Grows well in the bog pool, greenhouse and indoors. Helps control mosquito larva.

Customer Reviews

Based on 11 reviews
Christopher Nobrega
This Waterwheel is a BEAST

Within the first week of having this aldrovanda it grew by almost 2 inches in length, and the traps look beautiful.

Ronald E Spears

When it arrived it was less than 1-inch...a week later it has grown almost 3 additional inches. Nice little plant. Nice shipping and labelling. Always a good source...also got a really nice S. flava rubricorpa


Unfortunately I received my plant last Friday and now it's dead I don't understand what I did wrong

Christopher Walsh
Waterwheel First Timer

Ordered two waterwheels and they came to my door pretty quickly. I've had them for a couple of weeks now and they are growing so fast! One is probably 4 times as big as when I got it and the other is about twice as big. No complaints at all. Thank you!

Joseph Hromy
Amazing aquatic carnivorous plants

These little plants looked so cool. They were well packaged and arrived quick. Great service as always from this nursery.

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