The duckweeds (genus Lemna) and related genera of the duckweed family (Lemnaceae) are the smallest flowering plants known

Despite their diminutive size, the flowers of duckweeds can attract flies, mites, small spiders, and even bees that can spread the plant’s pollen after being attracted by sticky secretions from the stigma.

Scientists have recently come to appreciate the fast growth rate of duckweeds, however, and the plants are being used for bioremediation of waterways with excessive amounts of phosphorus and nitrogen from agricultural runoff. Harvesting duckweeds as a crop can remove these pollutants and provide valuable livestock feed or fertilizer.

Duckweed is very important to waterfowl and marsh birds; supports the insects that they eat. Reproduction occurs rapidly, so management can be tough for this plant.

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