Showing posts with label collecting pond plants. Show all posts
Showing posts with label collecting pond plants. Show all posts

Saturday, May 08, 2010

Pond plants

What garden pond plants are best for zone 5?
I have about a 350 gallon pond with a waterfall. The pond is lined. 

What plants can be used with a lined pond given there is no soil at bottom to plant anything in?

In a lined pond, put your plants in a pot or leave them in the pot they came in. Make sure the top of the pot is about 1" below the water surface. Tropicals like lotus or tropical water lilies will not do well where you live, but there are many aquatic plants that will. Hardy water lilies will be wonderful and make it through your wicked winter. Here's an article I wrote about more hardy pond plants:

To find more pond information, go to

Friday, April 25, 2008

Wild Plants

If you gather plants from the wild, you will bring in parasites and diseases. If you must harvest from the roadside ditches and swamps, first of all, be careful. There are some unpleasant creatures living in those ditches and swamps.

Secondly check local laws, it may be illegal.

Third, put your plants in a washtub or bucket of water with a cup of so of Clorox in it. Leave them there for a week to ten days. That will kill any parasites or other bugs that may have found their way home with you.

Check them well when you put them in your pond for any hitchhiking critters that may have traveled to your house with your new plants.

I find it is often easier to buy the plants from a reputable aquatic nursery or online to assure the plants in your pond are disease and parasite free.

Tuesday, March 11, 2008

Ten Essential Pond Tips

1. You must have one bunch of anacharis (underwater grass) per square foot of water surface area. This serves as a natural filter and as food for the fish. It grows faster than the fish can eat it.

2. 50 - 60% of the surface of the water must be shaded with floating plants. Water lilies are great, as are water hyacinths, water lettuce or water poppies. Just be sure to compost them as they multiply and not allow them loose in a natural waterway.

3. You must have fish to complete the balanced ecosystem. I recommend common goldfish. Do not put Koi in your pond unless you have built a koi pond. They will eat all of your plants.

4. Do not feed your fish. They will become too big for the pond and upset the ecosystem. You will have an overpopulation problem and all of your fish will die.

5. Put in one linear foot of fish for each 25 square feet of pond surface area. If you have 100 square feet of pond, you may have 4 foot long fish, 8 six inch fish or 16 three inch fish and so on.

6. Do not allow turtles, crawfish, alligators, ducks, geese, dogs, raccoons, possums, muskrats, nutria or your children to swim in your pond.

7. Do not use chemicals!!! EVER! Add a dechlorinator when you first fill the pond and then when you add more than 10% water afterwards. 

8. Do not worry about pH. It will take care of itself.

9. Remove any dead or decaying vegetation regularly so that ammonia does not build up and foul your pond.

10. Relax. Your pond will generally take care of itself. I recommend benevolent neglect as the best approach to pondkeeping.

For detailed pond information, see my articles at Backyard Ponds with the Pondlady

Tuesday, May 15, 2007

Pond Plants, Cyperus

The umbrella palm or cyperus accents the beauty of other aquatics. Stems rise two to four feet high to display ribbon like masses of four to eight inch long leaves. In the summer not particularly appealing and very small green flowers appear. Soon the blooms turn caramel, contrasting nicely with the umbrella-shaped foliage. A Madagascar native, the Umbrella Palm likes marshy ground or shallow water and full sun. It also does well indoors planted in moist soil.

Cyperus is probably one of the hardiest pond plants. Be careful planting it in soil. I have seen it break up foundations of houses because of it's umm, very strong growth habit.

Friday, July 21, 2006

Algae Blues

Algae can easily be controlled.

1. Balance your vegetation, marginals (with good root systems such as
Pickerel, Iris), oxygenators (parrots feather, anacharis) and surface
coverage (water lilies, parrot’s feather). Also be patient, nature tends to
correct itself. I've found that patience is much better than trying to
overcontrol pond chemistry.

2. When pH gets on the basic side algae flourishes. Vinegar is weak and it takes forever (days) to neutralize. But it takes an expert to use muriatic acid properly, so do not put concentrated muriatic acid in your pond to balance pH!

3. It is good to have algae slime on the sides of your pond... this is a
sign of a healthy pond and can generate up to 70% of the oxygen needed for
your pond.

4. If you feed your fish, use a biological filter. The nitrate load will always get high.

5. Fresh water mussels work great and multiply faster than goldfish. But
if you get hungry they are great over linguini.

6. Scotch Barley bales work, but the pond must be cleared of algae first and
it will take some time to initiate the decomposition process. Approximately
3 months in a zone 6 winter or 1 month during the summer, i.e. you will need
overlap when exchanging the bales.

7. Black dye is very effective and is asetheticaly pleasing to show off
water lilies, but again the pond must be cleared first of algae. The other
trick is having the right amount in the pond. Since I use a white sand/pea
gravel for my pot topping, I add dye until I do not see the stones. This is
tricky, because it can slow plant growth if put in too strong and if not put
in high enough concentration you will get algae formation. If you do go down
this road, then stay away from the blue or green dyes. Trust me you will not
like the result.

8. There are several products on the market that will wipe out algae
population without harming fish or desirable plants. The downside is they
wipe out all of the algae and you may end up with an anaerobic pond.

9. Displace 25% of your water with non-chlorinated water (well or rain) on a
weekly basis during > 80 F weather.

10. UV (ozone) will work and is good when you have a lot of fish. The down
side is the ozone is a great oxidant and will kill some of the beneficial
critters. UV lights will NOT work for blanketweek/filamentous algae.