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Monocotyledoneae (Monocots)
Potamogetonaceae (Pondweed Family)
State Protection
Federal Protection
Not Listed
State Conservation Status Rank
Global Conservation Status Rank


State Ranking Justification

There are 7 verified occurrences, 17 historical occurrences.

Conservation and Management


Pollution may threaten the species in Lake George.



In New York, Potamogeton alpinus has been found shallow water near the shore of cold lakes, streams, and slow-moving rivers (New York Natural Heritage Program 2011). Moderately to strongly alkaline waters (Crow and Hellquist 2000). Ponds, lakes, and slow-moving streams (FNA 2000).

Associated Ecological Communities

  • Confined river* (guide)
  • Mesotrophic dimictic lake*
  • Oligotrophic dimictic lake (guide)
  • Oligotrophic pond*
  • Oxbow lake/pond* (guide)
  • Unconfined river* (guide)

Associated Species

  • Chara
  • Eriocaulon aquaticum (northern pipewort, northern hat-pins)
  • Nuphar variegata (common yellow pond-lily, common spatter-dock)
  • Nymphaea odorata
  • Pontederia cordata (pickerelweed)
  • Potamogeton epihydrus (ribbon-leaved pondweed)
  • Potamogeton gramineus (grass-leaved pondweed)
  • Potamogeton perfoliatus (clasping-leaved pondweed)
  • Potamogeton zosteriformis (flat-stemmed pondweed)
  • Sagittaria cuneata (northern arrowhead)
  • Sparganium
  • Vallisneria americana (water-celery, tape-grass)


New York State Distribution

New York is near the southern edge of the range.

Identification Comments

Identifying Characteristics


Best Time to See

It is best to survey for Northern Pondweed from late August through September, when it is in fruit.

  • Vegetative
  • Fruiting

The time of year you would expect to find Red Pondweed vegetative and fruiting in New York.


Red Pondweed
Potamogeton alpinus Balbis

  • Kingdom Plantae
    • Phylum Anthophyta
      • Class Monocotyledoneae (Monocots)
        • Order Najadales
          • Family Potamogetonaceae (Pondweed Family)

Additional Common Names

  • Pondweed


  • Potamogeton alpinus var. tenuifolius (Raf.) Ogden
  • Potamogeton alpinus var. subellipticus (Fern.) Ogden

Additional Resources


Gleason, Henry A. and A. Cronquist. 1991. Manual of Vascular Plants of Northeastern United States and Adjacent Canada. The New York Botanical Garden, Bronx, New York. 910 pp.

Hellquist, C.B. and G.E. Crow 1980. Aquatic Vascular Plants of New England: Part 1. Zosteraceae, Potamogetonaceae, Zannichelliaceae, Najadaceae. New Hampshire Agricultural Experiment Station University of New Hampshire. Station Bull. 515.

Holmgren, Noel. 1998. The Illustrated Companion to Gleason and Cronquist's Manual. Illustrations of the Vascular Plants of Northeastern United States and Adjacent Canada. The New York Botanical Garden, Bronx, New York.

House, Homer D. 1924. Annotated list of the ferns and flowering plants of New York State. New York State Museum Bulletin 254:1-758.

Mitchell, Richard S. and Gordon C. Tucker. 1997. Revised Checklist of New York State Plants. Contributions to a Flora of New York State. Checklist IV. Bulletin No. 490. New York State Museum. Albany, NY. 400 pp.

New York Natural Heritage Program. 2019. New York Natural Heritage Program Databases. Albany, NY.

Ogden, E.C. 1974. Anatomical patterns of some aquatic vascular plants of New York. New York State Museum Bull. 424.

Ogden, E.C., J.K. Dean, C.W. Boylen, R.B. Sheldon 1976. Field guide to the aquatic plants of Lake George, New York. New York State Museum Bull. 426.

Seymour, F.C. 1982. The flora of New England. A manual for the identification of all vascular plants including ferns and fern allies growing without cultivation in New England. Moldenka, Plainfield, New Jersey.

Taylor, Norman. 1915. Flora of the vicinity of New York. Memoirs of the New York Botanical Garden vol. V. New York, NY.

Weldy, T. and D. Werier. 2010. New York flora atlas. [S.M. Landry, K.N. Campbell, and L.D. Mabe (original application development), Florida Center for Community Design and Research University of South Florida]. New York Flora Association, Albany, New York


About This Guide

Information for this guide was last updated on: August 9, 2011

Please cite this page as:
New York Natural Heritage Program. 2019. Online Conservation Guide for Potamogeton alpinus. Available from: Accessed March 23, 2019.

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