The increasing worldwide demand for plants suitable for use in aquaria and ponds has an unfortunate consequence that many of the plant species involved in this trade end up being released into local waterways causing a range of environmental and economic problems. Some of the worst examples include water hyacinth (Eichhornia crassipes), Salvinia (Salvinia molesta), East Indian Hygrophila (Hygrophila polysperma) and Cabomba (Cabomba caroliniana).
To help biosecurity agencies and those responsible for managing aquatic weeds in rivers and wetlands to identify aquatic plant species, Shaun Winterton and colleagues in APHIS/USDA first developed a Lucid identification key to aquarium and pond plants of the world in 2004. This tool was initially distributed as a CD Rom, a second edition released in 2007, and a third edition, as an online key was released in September 2018.
The next stage in this continuing project has been the development of a Lucid Mobile app version of the aquarium and pond plant key, which has now been released as both Android and Apple versions. The app attempts to include all plants currently cultivated commercially in nurseries around the world for the aquarium and pond plant trade, as of 2017, as well as some genera grown in private collections or in association with ornamental ponds.
Note: This app version is part of the complete online Aquarium & Pond Plants of the World tool.