Nymphoides hydrophylla (Lour.) Kuntze, Revis. Gen. Pl. 2: 429 1891. (syn: Limnanthemum cristatum (Roxb.) Griseb.; Limnanthemum hydrophyllum Griseb.; Menyanthes cristata Roxb.; Menyanthes hydrophylla Lour.; Menyanthes sinarica Buch.-Ham. ex Steud.; Nymphoides cristata (Roxb.) Kuntze; Villarsia cristata (Roxb.) Spreng.; Villarsia hydrophyllum Roem. & Schult.) as per Catalogue of Life;
Nymphoides hydrophylla (Loureiro) Kuntze (syn: Limnanthemum cristatum (Roxb.) Griseb.; Nymphoides cristata (Roxb.) O.Kuntze) as per IUCN Red List (LC), India Biodiversity Portal, Annotated checklist of Flowering plants of Nepal, Wikipedia, Flora of Davanagere District, Karnataka, India By B. K. Manjunatha (2004- details with keys),  Flora of Medak District, Andhra Pradesh, India By T. Pullaiah, Chintala Prabhakar, B. Ravi Prasad Rao (1998- Details) & An Excursion Flora of Central Tamilnadu, India By K. M. Matthew (1995- Details with keys);
Nymphoides cristata (Roxb.) Kuntze, Revis. Gen. Pl. 2: 429 429 1891. (Syn. Limnanthemum cristatum (Roxb.) Griseb.; Menyanthes cristata Roxb.; Villarsia cristata (Roxb.) Spreng.) as per The Plant List Ver.1.1;
China (Fujian, Guangdong, Hainan, Hubei, Hunan, Jiangsu, Sichuan), Taiwan, Java, E-India, Laos, Thailand, Vietnam, Philippines (Luzon), Myanmar [Burma] (Shan), Darjeeling, Sri Lanka, Nepal, Pakistan (N.W.Frontier Prov.), USA (introduced) (Florida (introduced)) as per Catalogue of Life;
Crested Floatingheart • Hindi: कुमुदिनी Kumudini, Tagarmul • Marathi: कुमुदिनी Kumudini;

Nymphoides hydrophylla is reported from tropical Asia. In India it is reported throughout (Cook 1996).
It is a annual sometimes perennial. Deeply rooted in soil. Shallow freshwater ponds and slowly flowing water (Cook 1996).
This species is used as a medicine for ulcers and bites and as antihelmenthic (Cook 1996).

Citation: Karuppasamy, S. & Rao, M.L.V. 2013. Nymphoides hydrophylla. The IUCN Red List of Threatened Species 2013: e.T194158A8884939. http://dx.doi.org/10.2305/IUCN.UK.2011-1.RLTS9.en. Downloaded on 24 April 2016.


Nymphoides hydrophylla (crested floatingheart, white water snowflake, white snowflake[citation needed]) is an aquatic plant of the family Menyanthaceae native to tropical Asia. It has cordate floating leaves that support a lax inflorescence of dainty white flowers with fringed petal margins. Its slim stem (spear) is edible, and is used as vegetable in Taiwan, mostly produced at Meinong District, Kaohsiung.
Flowers of N.  hydrophylla are gynodioecious.[1] The fruit is a capsule bearing many flattened seeds.
The plants are commonly sold for use in ornamental water gardens. Outside their native range they can escape cultivation and become nuisance weeds, particularly in Florida. They are not killed by freezing, and have been reported in Lake Marion, South Carolina.[2]
(from Wikipedia on 24.4.16)

Rhizomatous annuals or perennials; rhizome 0.5-1.5 cm thick. Primary fertile shoots many, uniphyllous, arising from the axils of scales on the rhizome. Secondary shoots zig-zag, sympodial, many-jointed, each joint bearing a single floating leaf. Leaves all fertile, floating, 6-10 cm across, ovate to orbicular, base deeply cordate, gland-dotted below, membranous; petiole to 2.5 cm long. Flowers bisexual and female, in umbellate clusters of 10 -20 at the junction of the branch and petiole; pedicels 3-4.5 cm long. Calyx deeply 5-partite; lobes 3-5 mm long, narrowly lanceolate. Corolla white with a yellow throat; tube c. 2 mm long with a ring of glandular hairs at the throat; lobes 5, 7-8 x 3-4 mm, with flexuous, membranous wings on the margins and a similar median longitudinal crest within. Stamens 5, highly reduced in female flowers. Ovary bottle-shaped with 5, minute, orbicular, disc glands at the base; stigmas 2-lobed. Capsule to 14 mm long, oblong. Seeds 4-6 in each capsule, to 2 mm across, discoid, brown.
Flowering and fruiting: Throughout the year
Ditches in grasslands and ponds
Indo-Malesia and South China
(Attributions- Dr. N Sasidharan (Dr. B P Pal Fellow), Kerala Forest Research Institute, Peechi from India Biodiversity Portal)

Date/Time- 29/11/09

Location- Place, Altitude, GPS- at Manjeera Dam, Sangareddy, Medak District, Andhra Pradesh

Habitat- Garden/ Urban/ Wild/ Type- Wild in the lake

Plant Habit- Tree/ Shrub/ Climber/ Herb- aquatic herb

Flowers Size/ Colour/ Calyx/ Bracts- White small flowers

This one is Nymphoides cristata with white flowers with yellow centre, lacking the fringed margin of N. indica.

Nymphoides hydrophylla

the plant in the photo is Nymphoides cristata (Roxburgh) Kuntze

N. hydrophylla as per eflora of China has totally white flowers and campanulate corolla. Here yellow centre can be clearly seen as in N. cristata.

In Marathi called Kumud or Kumudini

in North India Kumudni is Neel Kamal. And the folk lore is that it blooms at moon rise.

If the two are synonyms then of course N. hydrophylla should be the correct because Lour. (1790) antedates Roxb (1798 or 1799) for basionym. Then of course our identifications match.
It would, however, interesting to know the date of publication BSI monograph, because both Flora of China (published 1994 onwards) and GRIN record (verified in 2006) the two are treated as distinct species. In that case above plant should be N. cristata. I am sure … will do this research for us.

Nymphoides hydrophylla seems to be a synonym of Limnanthemum cristatum..or N.cristata

Nymphoides hydrophylla : 4 posts by 3 authors. Attachments (3)
Posting some photos of Nymphoides hydrophyla taken near Vasai (Dist.-Palghar, Maharashtra) on 17.04.2016

yes. Nice pictures, … unlike the water snowflake (your other  case, also from Vasai, ) this is on the RED LIST threatened (slightly). wonder why. some predators may be or perhaps over harvesting, since red list tells us its used as a medicine for stomach. I see it in WEST Bengal in the same ponds as the water snowflake, and in private homes, deliberately planted (both species)

Thanks … I was not aware of it’s Red List Status. Generally both the species N.indica and N.hydrophyla are seen growing together in the ponds/ lakes. Should ask locals where they are aware of  it’s medicinal use.

Thanks, …,
As per the following links Nymphoides cristata & Nymphoides hydrophylla (Loureiro) Kuntze (although The Plant List Ver. 1.1 states them to be different) are same:

This view is also supported by:
Flora of Davanagere District, Karnataka, India By B. K. Manjunatha (2004- details with keys) 
Flora of Medak District, Andhra Pradesh, India By T. Pullaiah, Chintala Prabhakar, B. Ravi Prasad Rao (1998- Details)
An Excursion Flora of Central Tamilnadu, India By K. M. Matthew (1995- Details with keys)


Taken at a resort in Kandy, Sri Lanka on the 17th of November, 2010.
Flowers were very tiny.

Hooghly Today : Nymphoides cristata (Roxburgh) Kuntze:

Nymphoides cristata (Roxburgh) Kuntze, photographed today, in Hooghly.
ID help :
Earlier group posts by members :-


ANMAY15/16 Nymphoides cristata (Roxb.) Kuntze : 5 posts by 2 authors. Attachments (8)

Family: Menyanthaceae
Date: 30th April 2015
Place: Tumkur district, Karnataka

Habit: Herb
Habitat: Aquatic

in favourable situations chokes water bodies
also called snowflake by locals 

But must not be too bad for water bodies ma’am.
I saw it in three different lakes in two districts and in both places, it occupied a specific part of the lake, near the edges and only in small numbers.

every eco system is different
also seasons make a difference
year to year changes occur
people who follow these can tell us more
who have  carefully plotted laboriously compiled data sets
australians keep tabs on weeds
look them up

I will ma’am.

Images by tspkumar



TSP-JAN2016-09-09:Images of Nymphoides cristata (Menyanthaceae) : 1 post by 1 author. Attachments (3)

It is my pleasure to share few images of Nymphoides cristata  (Menyanthaceae 

Habit: Herb 

Habitat: Aquatic-Tank 

Sighting: Tumkur, Karnataka, about 800 msl 

Date: 10-08-2014 and 17-03-2015

22-01-2010 / 05:00 PM- Mudumalai WLS- 820 msl- TN; Aquatic herb for id 010610MK1 – efloraofindia | Google Groups
at Central Park,Salt Lake, Near Kolkata on 24/10/2007; NYMPHAEA – WHICH SPECIES? – indiantreepix | Google Groups


Pench NP, MP, March 2022 :: Nymphoides hydrophylla :: ARK2022-076: 5 high res. images.
Nymphoides hydrophylla
This was found in the waterholes of Pench National Park, MP in March 2022.


Nymphoides cristata for validation: 2 high res. images.
Request for validation of Nymphoides cristata from Bilaspur. Photographed in November, 2022.

Looks matching. Please check Nymphoides hydrophylla (Lour.) Kuntze also.



IUCN Red List (LC)  India Biodiversity Portal  Wikipedia  Annotated checklist of Flowering plants of Nepal  Flora of Davanagere District, Karnataka, India By B. K. Manjunatha (2004- details with keys)  Flora of Medak District, Andhra Pradesh, India By T. Pullaiah, Chintala Prabhakar, B. Ravi Prasad Rao (1998- Details) An Excursion Flora of Central Tamilnadu, India By K. M. Matthew (1995- Details with keys)

The Plant List Ver. 1.1 (Nymphoides hydrophylla (Lour.) Kuntze) IPNI (Nymphoides hydrophylla (Lour.) Kuntze) The Plant List Ver.1.1
(Nymphoides cristata (Roxb.) Kuntze) IPNI (Nymphoides cristata (Roxb.) Kuntze) GRIN
(Nymphoides cristata (Roxb.) Kuntze) GRIN (Nymphoides cristata (Roxb.) O.Ktze) BSI Flora of India  Flora of China (Nymphoides hydrophylla (Loureiro) Kuntze)
Flora of China (Nymphoides cristata (Roxburgh) Kuntze)  Flora of Pakistan (Nymphoides cristata (Roxb.) O.Ktze)  Flowers of India