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Yellow Floating Heart

Photo by Greg Bales

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Common Name: Yellow floating heart
Scientific Name: Nymphoides peltata
Origin: Asia and Europe


Yellow floating heart is an herbaceous perennial that has stout, branching stems. The heart-shaped, almost circular, leaves are usually oppositely arranged and frequently purplish underneath. Bright yellow flowers have 5 petals and distinctively fringed edges. It spreads both vegetatively and by seeds.


Yellow floating heart is found rooted in the mud of still bodies of water. It is also found in water gardens, which are oftentimes the source of its introductions.


This plant grows in dense patches, excluding native plant species, creating stagnant areas with low oxygen levels underneath the floating mats, and negatively impacting fish and wildlife habitat and recreational use.


Limited information is available on the control of yellow floating heart. Based on the plant’s characteristics, mechanical and hand removal would most likely be effective.

Regional Distribution

Early Detection

WNY PRISM Priority

Tier 2 – Eradication

Invasive Species Priorities – Tier Chart


Yellow floating heart was introduced to the U.S. as an ornamental water garden plant. It spreads through plant fragments transported on watercraft and by escaping cultivation.


Yellow floating heart is a prohibited species in New York State – for more information on Prohibited and Regulated Species, visit

Native Alternatives

Spatterdock/yellow pond lily (Nuphar lutea)

Water marigold (Bidens beckii)

Grassy arrowhead (Sagittaria graminea)

Water buttercup (Ranunculus longirostris)

Common bladderwort (Utricularia vulgaris)