Eichhornia crassipes (Mart.) Solms: Uses, Challenges, Threats, and Prospects

ScientificWorldJournal. 2020 Jul 7;2020:3452172. doi: 10.1155/2020/3452172. eCollection 2020.

Abstract

Water hyacinths pose serious challenges to humanity and the environment. Considering the enormity of the menace associated with the growth and spread of the plant and the difficulty in achieving a single, generally acceptable control method, it is becoming increasingly imperative to explore the potentials of the plant. New water hyacinth-related articles are regularly being published. Recently published articles about the plant were accessed, and the information in these articles is presented in the context of the pros and cons of the plant. Some of the benefits that can be derived from the plant include biogas and biofuel production, medicinal functions, vermicomposting, compost production, and bioremediation. However, clogging of waterways, obstruction of water transportation, and fishing activities; breeding grounds for pests and diseases; and reduction of water quality, loss of biodiversity, and economic downturn in areas invaded by the plant are problems associated with it. The peculiarity in the invasiveness of each situation should determine whether or not the growth of the plant is a problem, especially if the opportunity to harness the potentials of the plant exists. There are three major methods for controlling the plants when control becomes inevitable: mechanical, chemical, and biological. To achieve the best control, integrating two or more control methods is advised.

Publication types

  • Review

MeSH terms

  • Animal Feed*
  • Animals
  • Biodegradation, Environmental
  • Biodiversity
  • Biofuels*
  • Biological Control Agents
  • Composting*
  • Disease Vectors
  • Eichhornia / chemistry
  • Eichhornia / classification
  • Eichhornia / growth & development*
  • Fisheries
  • Humans
  • Plant Weeds / growth & development*
  • Plants, Medicinal / chemistry
  • Socioeconomic Factors
  • Water Quality

Substances

  • Biofuels
  • Biological Control Agents