Sunday, March 10, 2013

Favorite POND plants and features zone 5-6

 Most people think a pond is a lot of work. Not least not our pond! It is 30 x 70 and about 2-3 feet deep. It has a rubber liner. We have a waterfall pump but we do not have a filter. Here's how we keep our pond low maintance. In short, we let nature do all the work.
We stock it with a couple hundred 'feeder fish' goldfish (10 for a dollar). Those durable little goldfish make it through our harsh winters with no problems. However, the visiting cranes and herons do like to dine on them occasionally, which is why we have goldfish and not the more costly Koi. The fish will eat alot of stuff we don't want growing in the pond. We have about 10-15 aquatic plants (in flow-thru pots) that drink up a lot of nutrients that would otherwise be fuel for algae. We have a submerged pump that provides water circulation (important) and a lovely fountain spray. Finally, we have lots of 'floater' plants, (water hyacinth and water lettuce) that provide oxygen while absorbing nutrients. You can see the circles of floater plants encompassed in hoops (just like hoola hoops) in the picture below. These fast-growing floaters are NOT winter hardy, so they will not become a burden by crowding out the pond. Unlike the aquatic plants in pots, these floaters must be replaced every year.

Our favorite potted plants for the pond include yellow and purple IRIS. We have 3 large clumps that were originally in large pots (with flow-thru holes) but they have long since outgrown the pots and continue to proliferate at a depth of about 12-18 inches. We also like MARSH MARIGOLD, ZEBRA RUSH and mini CATTAILS.

'Floaters' are plants that float on the surface. Must-have floaters include WATER HYACINTH and WATER LETTUCE.

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