Plants that help keep the Fish Pond Healthy
Plants can add interest and beauty to your fish pond but did you
know that they also are vital for maintaining healthy water
quality which will help keep your pond clear and your fish
There are five different types of fish pond plants that you want to think
about planting in and around your pond - floating plants,
oxygenating plants, marginal plants, bog plants and deep water
plants. These plants not only give your pond and authentic look
but can also help keep the water oxygenated, cut down on algae
growth, give your fish a place to hide as well as a place to
spawn and can also provide food.
When adding plants to your fish pond you want to think about how
large they will get and how fast they will grow. You don't want
to add plants that will totally overwhelm your pond or that will
make a full-time job of cutting back their growth. You also want
to be sure that the plant can survive winters in your area.
Plants don't have to be planted directly in the soil of your
pond, you can set them in mesh pots or fabric pond pots which
will allow the air to pass through but will also prohibit the
soil from getting into your pond and turning it muddy.
To make your pond look its best and be it's healthiest you need
to select plants for each pond layer. These different plants
perform different functions as described below.
Deep water plants like Lotus, Water Lilies and Water Hawthorne
grow in the deep waters of the pond. These plants will help
remove the waste from the pond and act as sort of a natural
filtration. They need oxygen and sunlight to grow their best. You
might consider using an aquatic fertilizer that is safe for
ponds. The Lotus and Water Lilies prefer water that is 2 feet
deep but the Hawthorne can grow in as little as three to 24
Oxygenating plants provide important oxygen to the pond as well
as help to control the growth of algae by eating the same
nutrients and carbon dioxide that algae needs to grow.
Oxygenating plants also can provide food for your fish and act as
shelters and spawning areas. Some good oxygenating plants include
Hornwort, Water Violet, Water Buttercup and Water Milfoil.
Floating plants look great in the pond and they also provide
shade and shelter for the fish and other creatures that live
there. Be warned, however, that many of the floating plants will
grow quickly and soon take over your pond. This can not only be
an eyesore but can also be bad for the pond itself as it prevents
photosynthesis which will decrease the waters oxygen level.
Floating plants like Duckweed grow very quickly so you probably
want to avoid that and stick to plants like Water Lettuce,
Bladder Wart, Water Soldier, Water Hyacinths and Water Chestnut
Marginal plants like Sweet Flag, Golden Buttons, Marsh Marigolds,
Japanese Arrowhead, and Lobelia grow in the shallows around the
edge of your pond and depths of 2 inches to 1 foot. Cattails are
also a marginal plant but they can be very invasive so you
probably want to avoid those unless you plan to spend a lot of
time weeding your pond.
Bog plants like Astilbe, Primula and Lysimachia grow at the very
edge of the pond in the wet soil. they are important as they help
siphon off surplus nutrients which allows control of algae growth
thus keeping your pond clear.
Lee Dobbins writes for
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