Callitriche – For Oxygenating and Attracting Newts
Callitriche is a submerged aquatic but also terrestrial plant that grows under water to a water depth of 60 cm. It adapts to growing in shallow and moist margins, where it favors clay and silt. There are many wild species that are very similar in appearance and they can be found growing full sun, partial and/or full shade, all over the UK in ponds, lakes, canals, marsh lands, streams and ditches. Callitriche also known as ‘Water Starwort’, has small, round, bright green leaves that change shape on the water surface where it puts on a display of rosette clusters of star shaped leaves that float on the water. The fresh green looking leaves are Evergreen and look great throughout the autumn and winter. Its under water leaves are favored in spring by Palmate, Smooth and Great Crested Newts that lay and wrap their eggs in the leaves for protection.
Uses in the Water Garden
Starwort is a native plant and very popular with many water gardeners and for lots of good reasons. It’s an excellent for wildlife gardens and attracting wildlife. Being adaptable in the wild to varied water levels, this plant is Terrestrial and therefore, transforms itself in late spring and early summer where it takes on a completely different growing habit of low, dense, creeping mats of foliage. Starwort is therefore, an excellent pond edging plant for all pond visitors that need a drink and a safe entrance and exit out of the water. The underwater growth also makes excellent protection and a safe hiding place for small fish and all kinds of underwater pond life. Finally, Starwort is a fantastic oxygenating and nitrate removing plant. Some say that it can only be found growing in clear water, but that would be because it has created that crystal clear water. We carry two distinct species of Callitriche for sale on our nursery www.lilieswatergardens.co.uk. For more information and images, please click on the links below.
Callitriche Stagnalis (more star shaped leaves than Hamulata)
Callitriche Hamulata (more dense and compact out of water)