Abstract: This study compares the performance of simulated shallow ponds vegetated with Lemna minor L. under controlled and semi-natural conditions for the treatment of simulated wastewater containing textile dyes. The objectives were to assess the water quality outflow parameters, the potential of L. minor concerning the removal of chemical oxygen demand (COD) and four azo dyes (Acid blue 113, reactive blue 198, Direct Orange 46 and Basic Red 46) and the plants’ growth rate. Findings show that all mean outflow values of COD, total dissolved solids (TDS) and electrical conductivity (EC) were significantly (p < 0.05) lower within the outdoor compared to the indoor experiment except the dissolved oxygen (DO). The COD removal was low for both experiments. The outflow TDS values were acceptable for all ponds. The pond systems were able to reduce only BR46 significantly (p < 0.05) for the tested boundary conditions. Removals under laboratory conditions were better than those for semi-natural environments, indicating the suitability of operating the pond system as a polishing step in warmer regions. The mean outflow values of zinc and copper were below the thresholds set for drinking and irrigation waters and acceptable for L. minor. The dyes inhibited the growth of the L. minor.