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Thalia dealbata Fraser ex Roscoe
Powdery Alligator-flag, Powdery Thalia, Water Canna
Marantaceae (Prayer-Plant Family)
Synonym(s): Thalia barbata
USDA Symbol: THDE
USDA Native Status: L48 (N)
Powdery Alligator-flag is a robust, tropical, aquatic perennial, 3-8 ft. tall. The large, broadly lance-shaped, long-petioled leaves are covered with a white powdery coating as are all parts of the plant. The flowers are crowded in an open panicle.
From the Image Gallery
Plant CharacteristicsDuration: Perennial
Leaf Retention: Deciduous
Fruit Type: Capsule
Size Notes: Up to about 8 feet tall.
Bloom InformationBloom Color: White , Purple
Bloom Time: May , Jun , Jul , Aug , Sep , Oct
DistributionUSA: AL , AR , GA , IL , KY , LA , MO , MS , OK , SC , TX
Native Distribution: Locally on Coastal Plain from SC to TX & n. into OK, extreme s.e. MO & s. IL
Native Habitat: Cypress swamps; marshes; ponds
Growing ConditionsWater Use: High
Light Requirement: Part Shade
Soil Moisture: Wet
Soil Description: Shallow water or poorly drained, wet soils. Mud, Saline tolerant
Conditions Comments: A dramatic, tropical looking plant with broad grey-green leaves. Small purple flowers bloom on tall flower stalks above the leaves. Good for wetland gardens and habitats. May be propagated easily by divisions. Larval food plant for the Brazilian Skipper butterfly.
BenefitUse Ornamental: Water garden, Bog or pond area
Conspicuous Flowers: yes
Interesting Foliage: yes
Deer Resistant: Minimal
Find Seed or Plants
View propagation protocol from Native Plants Network.
National Wetland Indicator Status
From the National Organizations DirectoryAccording to the species list provided by Affiliate Organizations, this plant is on display at the following locations:
Lady Bird Johnson Wildflower Center - Austin, TX
Texas Discovery Gardens - Dallas, TX
BibliographyBibref 1620 - Gardening with Native Plants of the South (Reprint Edition) (2009) Wasowski, S. with A. Wasowski
Bibref 318 - Native Texas Plants: Landscaping Region by Region (2002) Wasowski, S. & A. Wasowski
Search More Titles in Bibliography
Web ReferenceWebref 38 - Flora of North America (2019) Missouri Botanical Garden, St. Louis, MO & Harvard University Herbaria, Cambridge, MA.
Webref 23 - Southwest Environmental Information Network (2009) SEINet - Arizona Chapter
Additional resourcesUSDA: Find Thalia dealbata in USDA Plants
FNA: Find Thalia dealbata in the Flora of North America (if available)
Google: Search Google for Thalia dealbata
MetadataRecord Modified: 2023-02-28
Research By: LAL