Aquatic plants

European Union Ban of Eichhornia and Lagarosiphon

In October of 2015 we advised our customers and followers of the potential EU Ban of Eichhornia and Lagarosiphon major. Recently we have been informed that the List of Invasive Alien Species has now been published and due to be enforces by 3rd August 2016.

Although we fought, alongside many others, in the campaign to remove Eichhornia and Lagarosiphon major , they sadly remain on the list.

There will be a transitional period to allow retailers to sell their stock to the general public until the 2nd August 2017. After this period you are allowed to keep it in your garden but you must not sell it and you must not allow it to escape into the wild.

Eichhornia crassipes major - Water hyacinth
This plant is perfectly safe in the UK, it proves no risk to the environment provided it is not exported. Eichhornia is not hardy and cannot be invasive even with global warming predictions within northern Europe.

Lagarosiphon major - Elodea crispa
This plant has been sold for over 100 years, its rapid removal from the market is likely to cause the use of more invasive species like Elodea Canadensis. In the majority of situations Lagarosiphon is not invasive and performs a vital role in the pond as it is the best oxygenator available. However, it can be invasive in large clay lined ponds or chalky lakes. As an evergreen it oxygenates throughout the year. Although we are in a good position to stock native oxygenating plants, these will take time to increase stock levels for general sale.

Therefore to protect the consumer and the environment it is necessary to ensure the consumer is correctly advised. Our Point of sale, will be supplied free of charge to all those who have pre ordered with us. It states the risks and the customer’s responsibilities. Now DEFRA have clarified their position (see their FAQ’s), we will check the wording with them and update it for next season if required.

At Anglo Aquatic Plant we do our best to ensure that there is a wide range of native alternatives available. We strongly recommend that even if you choose to stock Lagarosiphon major, you also stock native oxygenators to provide consumers choice.

What effect does the outcome of the EU Referendum have on these regulations?
The decision by the British public to leave the European Union does not mean there will be immediate changes. Until the UK formally leaves the EU, it still has a legal obligation to comply with the EU law.