Wetlands are critical habitats that provide homes for many different plants and animals; the wetland plants and lands help control natural floods and filter many pollutants. Wetland plants include all Hydrophilic plants or plants that can survive in waterlogged areas. Although there are many different wetland plants, I will focus on Cattail, Bulrush, and the Duck Potato plants.
One of the most widely known aquatic plants is the water lily. Its diversity and beauty are known throughout the world. The smallest of these plants is the duckweed, one of nature’s great protectors for those little animals like bullfrogs. All aquatic plants must live in lands saturated continuously in water, making wetlands the perfect place for them to call home.
The Cattail is widely known around the world, and it is indeed a fascinating plant. If needed, it can be used as food and shelter! This plant is rich in starch and essential vitamins, more so than potatoes, and can be made into so many different things. When Cattail is seen, you watch a long known evolution from open water to the marsh to dry-land. It can grow to be 9 feet tall. It has strap-like leaves. If cut, it is spongy and stiff and reed-like on the outside.
The Bul Rush is a very diverse plant with many different species. It can grow to be 10 feet tall with no leaves but will produce a flower just before the tip of the stem. Another form of Bul Rush grows to be 6 feet tall and has leaves that grow up to 3 feet long. It produces flowers and fruit that many animals eat. Birds also use it to make a nest. Bul Rush provides a home for many small aquatic animals and is also used as a food source. Many different bird species eat their seeds.
Duck potato is easily found in the wild. Its shape is easily distinguished from other aquatic plants. Duck potato has leaves that range from large, broad leaves 4 inches wide to thin narrow leaves 1 inch wide at most. The duck potatoes have white flowers that seem to dance up to their stem no matter how they produce white flowers with three petals. The plant gets its name from the tubers that grow deep beneath the soil. Although ducks rarely eat these, they do ingest the seeds, muskrats, and beavers that will eat the entire plant, including the tubers.