Are you trying to figure out a way to enhance your pond’s natural beauty, add to its liveliness and maintain the health of its water and inhabitants? If yes, then planting your pond might just be the best option for you.
There are many factors to take into account before deciding what plants to buy.
For instance, the size of your pond; if it’s relatively small, then slower-growing aquatic plants would be best suited, but if it’s larger, then vigorously growing pond plants are the perfect option for you.
Why Should You Plant Your Pond in the First Place?
There are countless benefits that come with planting your pond, some even being critical to a healthy pond ecosystem and crucial for maintaining its longevity and enhancing its quality. Below I have listed some of the most essential roles of water plants:
Reducing Algae Growth
Pond plants play the essential role of absorbing nutrients which could otherwise feed the algae that can clog your filters turn your water green and murky thus allowing blanket weed to grow.
They also help reduce light levels in the water, which is ideal for unwanted algae bloom.
Protecting the Fish
When housing fish and other aquatic specimens, it is important to provide them with some sort of protection.
The right pond plants will offer your fish a safe shelter and protect them from potential predators especially when it’s their time to spawn. Some fish will even feed on plants as a natural food source.
Oxygenating the Water
If you choose the right oxygenating ponds plants, they will help raise the oxygen level in your pond’s water, making it more ideal for the fish to grow and thrive in.
Low oxygen water is more likely to have algae in it, leaves your fish more exposed to diseases and affects their general health.
Other roles that are not as essential but will definitely improve your pond include:
Naturalizing the setting :
Apart from improving your pond’s general performance, plants will help add that more natural effect and seamless passage between the pond and the rest of the yard by hiding all the equipment, piping, drains and other artificial structures.
Enhancing the pond’s beauty:
Plants can add so much beauty and visual interest to your otherwise dull pond. The right balance of plants will provide you with a year-round variety of unique foliage shapes and colors.
How Do You Choose the Right Plants for Your Pond?
The choice of your water plants is a very important step as it highly affects the overall look of your pond and its performance.
Of course, not all plants will be right for every pond, as a poor choice of your plants might result in shortening its life span or clogging the pond and crowding out other plants, thus taking over your watery landscape.
Note that not all plants will adapt to your climate, nor will they be the perfect shape or size for your water feature. Luckily, researching water plants is pretty much the same as researching plants for your yard.
Make sure you take into account these considerations before purchasing your set of water plants:
- The height and spread the plants reach when they mature.
- The depth of the water that best meets their needs
- Their hardiness
- Whether or not they can serve as fish food
Overall, there are five different types of plants to choose from when picking vegetation for your pond.
- Bog / edging plants: This kind of plants is used to add interest to your pond’s borders, as they thrive in areas where the water is shallow and the ground isn’t waterlogged Examples of bog plants include irises, pennywort and cattails.
- Floating plants: These are perfect for bringing shade to your pond fish and beautifying your pond’s surface. The best part is that they are low maintenance. Examples of floaters include water lettuce, water hyacinth and frogbit.
- Oxygenating pond plants: This kind of pond plants is essential for fish ponds and wildlife ponds in general, the obvious reason being they’re adding essential oxygen to the water during daylight hours. Examples of top oxygenators include Anacharis, Red Ludwigia, Hornwort, Mermaid Plant, Cabomba…
- Submerged plants: As opposed to Boy plants, Submerged plants thrive in deeper water. They are almost entirely below the water’s surface and are considered great filters for ponds of all sizes and shapes. Examples of top submerged plants include water moss, hornwort, vallisneria…
- Marginal: Just like bog plants, marginal plants thrive is the outer shallows of your pond. They bring so much interest to the edges as they come in different colors and shapes especially during the summertime.
How Do You Plant Your Pond?
Now that you know the importance of pond planting and picking the right plants for your pond, let’s move on to some tips on how to actually plant and grow your water plants the right way the at the right time.
Helpful Tips for Planting Your Pond
Create Visual Interest
Pick plants that are varied in size and shape, colors and textures, and place them randomly. This will create more interest than plants that are all the same.
Playing with different shades and textures of green foliage will create a visually interesting space that is sure to calm and relax the most anxious minds. You can also accentuate it with some white flowers, it’s such a great combo!
Experiment with Colors
You can also play with color depending on the type of lighting your pond is placed in. For shady areas, orange, yellow and white will help brighten up your pond. For brighter areas, consider cool blue or violet.
Plant According to Size
This might seem obvious, but you should always put shorter plants in front of taller ones, this way you give more depth to your pond and keep all your beautiful plants at sight.
Plant According to Your Plants’ Needs
Plant your plants at the right depth, some require shallow water while some need to be planted deeper. Consider sun exposure as well.
Too much sun might damage some plants, while others need it to survive. If you’re not sure what your plant needs, ask a professional or search online, information is easily accessible nowadays luckily.