The water hyacinth has large fleshy green leaves, a swollen petiole and mauve coloured flowers. The water hyacinth is an aquatic plant that originates from tropical America and is an invasive alien in South Africa.
The water hyacinth is able to live in any body of water found across South Africa.
Since its introduction to South Africa in the early 1900s, the water hyacinth has done considerable damage to the natural environment. The plant has spread aggressively across the country. It chokes the waterways for essential nutrients of other plants wherever it grows.
Many attempts have been used to control and eliminate the water hyacinth, but they have all been unsuccessful.