False loosestrife can grow on shore and in waters up to 6′ deep. On shore the plant has green leaves and lays flat on the mud or wet soil. In the water its limp stems with bronze or red leaves are held erect by the water. Leaves will become green as they break the surface of the water.
In late September thru October, tiny white flowers are connected directly to the stem. Bases of the stems are a favorite food for muskrats. It can resemble an underwater version of creeping water primrose.
Control can be obtained with correctly applied aquatic herbicides.