Native plants of watercourses

A fundamental problem

The inland rivers and watercourses of South Australia are largely the forgotten part of the 

landscape, perhaps because they are dry for most of the time, perhaps because they are 

assigned a utilitarian purpose - a drain for the conveyance of urban and agricultural runoff, and 

a place to graze stock - or perhaps because the scale of the problem of reparation (for that is 

what is needed) is so huge that it is overwhelming.

It need not, and should not, be that way. The inland rivers and watercourses deserve much 

greater appreciation and a greater emphasis on their restoration.

Many rural towns and settlements in South Australia have been historically located on or near 

watercourses, which have then been highly modified to fit into the urban context. Modern-day 

attempts at “restoration” have resulted in cosmetic outcomes that have had little, if any,  

attention to riparian restoration.

Watercourses emerging from hilly land have also been highly modified as a result of land 

clearance and agricultural activities. This is a historic issue that has yet to be targeted on a 

state-wide scale.

Let's start with riparian restoration

Native Plants Of Watercourses In South Australia 

Native Aquatic Plants of SA

This booklet has been assembled from information about native 

aquatic plants associated with rivers and watercourses in South 

Australia, to help with their identification, and to inform about 

how to improve the condition of inland rivers and watercourses, 

whether they flow through towns or through the general 


The information has been assembled from sources from a 

number of years ago, but which are now difficult to find in the 

public domain.


This booklet will be continually updated as more information is assembled. It is intended for 

community groups, property owners, natural resources organisations, and individuals involved in 

environmental rehabilitation.

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