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Statewide IPM Program, University of California

Naiads  (Najas spp.)

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Life stages of Naiads top left picture bottom left picture right picture

Naiads are annual freshwater broadleaf plants with floating or submerged leaves, or both. They grow in rice fields and other areas where standing water persists from early spring into summer.

Mature plant

Leaves encircle the stem in whorls of three. Leaves are 1 inch (2.54 cm) long and very narrow, 1/100 to 1/10 of an inch (0.25–2.5 mm) wide and taper at the tips. Stems are 10 to 25 inches (25­–62.5 cm) long and may branch at the stem joints (nodes). Leaf edges have minute teeth.


Tiny, stalkless flowers are found in the junctions between the stem and leaf stalks.


Plants reproduce from seeds or from stems.

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