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Phil Edwards suggested we have a Sticky on references since so many people ask about information on the plants they can find in their area. So I offer the following resources.

If you want to find out about plants that you can find in your area first go to the USDA site. Enter the names of plants you think are in your state and the database will tell you what state the plant can be found in. For example entering "Echinodorus berteroi" will show that it grows in Wisconsin. By checking various databases you can get a good idea of what the plants look like, which will help you when you are in the field. Also take samples of anything that is in or near water. You can always ID them at home.

Plant ID Databases

United States Department of Agriculture Natural Resources Conservation Service Plants Database
http://plants.usda.gov/index.html
This is a great site to find out where a plant grows within the USA.

Center for Aquatic and Invasive Plants at the University of Florida
This is another good site with data on hundreds of invasive and non-invasive plants many of which are found outside Florida
http://aquat1.ifas.ufl.edu/welcome.html

Digital Flora of Texas Vascular Plant Image Library
Lots of good photos of plants
http://www.csdl.tamu.edu/FLORA/gallery/gallery_query.htm

WWW.BOTANY.COM
This is a botany dictionary. When you are trying find ID a plant and are reading the technical descriptions, the terms used seem like they came from another planet. This dictionary helps.
http://www.botany.com/index.16.htm

Books
Ecology of the Planted Aquarium (by Diana Walstad)
New Second Edition!
http://www.aquatic-gardeners.org/bookstore.html
This book is the bible for planted aquaria hobbyists. It focuses on the biology and chemistry of planted aquaria and ponds. Although it is a complete primer for low tech aquaria keeping, the scientific data presented applies to all techniques and is necessary reading for those who want to know what is happening in their aquaria, and who want to modify its conditions.

Aquarium Plants (by Christel Kasselmann)
Kriegar Publishing Company, Malabar, Florida, 2003
This is probably the best book on aquarium plants ever written. With 525 color photographs and it is certainly the most accurate.

Steve Pituch
 
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