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Planting for Garden Ponds – plant suggestions for use in ponds including those good for oxygenating the water.


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Planting
for Garden Ponds

Nothing looks better than
a nicely planted pond, a mass of leaves and some of the most beautiful
flowers available to the gardener. Visits to your local
aquatic retailer
will reveal a plethora of great plants and you just want to have them all
but, which are suitable for your pond? And where do you put them within
the pond?

arum liliesNot
all plants stocked in the pond plant section of your local retailer
are even pond plants, some are garden plants that like moist soil
and will survive a limited time in the pond but eventually drown.

The Arum lily (Zantedeschia aethiopica), though more of a garden
plant, likes to keep its feet in the water and so, if the water level
comes no higher than the top of the pot, preferably a few inches
lower, the plant creates a brilliant display for the pond with
bright green spade shaped leaves and a trumpet shaped flower or pure
white with yellow stamen. Though thought of as a funeral flower this
should be looked past and this plant is one I always have in ponds I
plant. A definite choice as a specimen plant (a decorative plant
used lightly amongst the background plants)
.

Another
of my favourites is Marsh marigold or kingcup is an ornamental plant
that also has good water purification properties and provides cover
for aquatic life.


It has large light green leaves and lots of yellow
flowers, which appear from April to June. It provides good water
purification for its growth. It is great cover for both aquatic and
terrestrial animals. If allowed to grow to full size, it covers the
surface for a good foot around its pot.

marsh marigold or king cup
monkey muskMonkey musk is a very odd name for such a pretty
and useful plant. It produces a great display of yellow flowers June to
august sometimes earlier.

Monkey musk grows vigorously removing plenty of
nutrients from the water as it does so; it also provides cover for aquatic
and terrestrial animals whilst it covers ground and water. Needs keeping
under control but every time you prune it removes nutrient from the water,
which is great.

The
chameleon plant has
great colours the one more common in the trade is the variegated species,
which is either a golden yellow with red or green. Its leaves give off a
scent of orange peel when brushed against and it has lovely small white
flowers in the spring. This plant grows well even into drier area of the
garden and out into open water like the monkey mu
sk the more
you prune it
the more nutrient is removed
.
chameleon plant

For larger ponds you cant
beat the reedmace, which is mistakenly called the bullrush, which is a
short spiky grass not attractive and very invasive.

The reedmace is excellent at removing waterborne
nutrients from the pond. Many animals find shelter among the stems and you
can also use the seed heads, dried, in flower arranging.

water liliesLilies of various species are great for a pond. The species depending on
the size of pond and preferred colour. Colours come in whites, pinks, reds,
coppers and yellows.

Different species like different depths of pond and
produce varying amounts of leaves and blooms. Lilies are great at covering
the surface of the pond to prevent algae and the cover provided makes your
fish feel more secure

.


Hornwort is a
oxygenating plant and unlike other oxygenators, is free floating. It is the
hardiest of oxygenators and survives where others will not even sometimes in
ponds with hungry koi. Like other oxygenators it grows well so is good for
the water and provides cover for fish and other life, but unlike other
oxygenators, because its free growing you can pull it out with a rake making
maintenance easier
.
hornwort

Classed as a oxygenator, the
parrots feather plant
tends to grow above the water with lovely fine green fronds These grow well
and are not only great for wild life and fish but cover unsightly areas of
the pond like liner or pipes with a great lush green growth. This is another
fast grower it does need work but again the more it needs pruning the more
nutrient is being removed


Like the monkey musk, the
yellow skunk cabbage is another unfortunately named plant. Named as its said
its blooms smell badly to attract flies but this is unsubstantiated really,
and gives this lovely plant a bad name. Growing to about two feet tall it has
light green oval leaves with freckles. The flowers, which appear in the
spring, can be quite large almost as long as the leaves themselves, which as
stated grow, to about two feet. A fully-grown Yellow skunk cabbage is quite
an impressive plant and makes a great specimen plant for the pond or bog
garden.