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#279923 - 02/05/12 10:50 AM Protecting Plants with cages
RER Offline


Registered: 01/23/12
Posts: 1926
Loc: N FL
100% of the vegetation has been removed by the Koi and grass carp in the 1/2 acre pond. I made these plant cages to submerge and seed with plants inside. I am planning on planting eel grass I have started in pots. I am also hoping to get lily pads started in the wide shorter ones. The idea is if the roots and sprouts are protected, the pads will make it through the mesh and float on the surface. Has any one had success making plant cages to protect some plants in a pond. Any feed back would be appreciated.


Edited by BobbyRice (05/29/13 09:41 AM)
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#279930 - 02/05/12 11:36 AM Re: Protecting Plants with cages [Re: RER]
Instar Offline


Registered: 01/28/11
Posts: 201
Loc: Pensacola, Florida
What are your planting depths?

Any protective cages that I have previously encountered always extended from the bottom of the pond to the surface of the water, and these were for backyard decorative ponds that are rarely over 3 feet deep.

To achieve satisfactory growth, the plants should be planted directly in the pond, not left in pots.

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#279932 - 02/05/12 12:06 PM Re: Protecting Plants with cages [Re: Instar]
RAH Offline
Lunker

Registered: 05/17/09
Posts: 4296
Loc: Indiana, Boone County, 25 mile...
I would say that planting in the pond bottom vs. pots depends on one's goals. I have seen beautiul waterlillies of many varieties grown in pots within larger ponds. The owner of the pond that I am refering to does not want the lillies to get out of control so he keeps them in pots and transplants as needed. I personally like a more self-sustaining system, so all my plants are planted in the pond bottom. If I had a pond denuded of vegetation, I would get the grass carp out of the pond.

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#279933 - 02/05/12 12:12 PM Re: Protecting Plants with cages [Re: RAH]
RER Offline


Registered: 01/23/12
Posts: 1926
Loc: N FL
Yes, planting them right in the pond floor. The koi rip up the roots too, so as long as the lilies and eel grass do well in the protected area i am fine with that. Don't want the plants to take over. I can adjust as I see how they do in the cages. I am wonderingif any one had done somthing similar and how it worked out or any pit falls to watch out for.
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#279935 - 02/05/12 12:16 PM Re: Protecting Plants with cages [Re: RER]
RER Offline


Registered: 01/23/12
Posts: 1926
Loc: N FL
I am also assuming have a couple oasis of plants would be better than having no vegetation at all for the general health of the pond and give insects, baby fish etc a place to hide.
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#279942 - 02/05/12 01:34 PM Re: Protecting Plants with cages [Re: RER]
RAH Offline
Lunker

Registered: 05/17/09
Posts: 4296
Loc: Indiana, Boone County, 25 mile...
It can only help

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#279953 - 02/05/12 03:27 PM Re: Protecting Plants with cages [Re: RAH]
RER Offline


Registered: 01/23/12
Posts: 1926
Loc: N FL
That's what I thought, should on the water in the next few weeks. I'll give an update layer in the spring on how any plants might be doing.
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#280021 - 02/06/12 01:40 PM Re: Protecting Plants with cages [Re: RER]
Leo Nguyen Offline


Registered: 01/09/12
Posts: 222
Loc: California
Bobby, great approach! Suggestion is, if you want to protect the plants, rather than capping the upper area, just protect the plants from the bottom, and raise above the surface by 12 inches (just in case of flooding or introduction of high water during rains. It also allow the plants to grow toward the surface without restriction.

Decrease your mesh size from a large 1" to 2" square gap down to 1/8" to 1/2". Small fish will actively come in to feed. One they're too big go come and and out, they'll grow inside that isolated area, and again, destroy your plant's potting area.

You already cover the deep implanting of the edging to prevent the fish from sneaking through from below. make sure at least 4" of the netting at the bottom go past the loose soil. When fishes get desperate, they do crazy things. Carps and koi will jump to get to the food sources when something is obstructing their way. Best to create the top as a pyramid shape rather than a flat top. This way, it allow the fish to roll off rather than trapped at the top.
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#280034 - 02/06/12 03:43 PM Re: Protecting Plants with cages [Re: Leo Nguyen]
RER Offline


Registered: 01/23/12
Posts: 1926
Loc: N FL
Thanks LEO, Good food for thought..The eel grass should have no problem poking right through the mesh at the top to allow free growth to the surface. I have a feeling it will be trimmed at the mesh line though. I do have spikes at the bottom to assist and keeping them planted firmly to the bottom. I cold move them from time to time to allow any thing trapped to get out and start a new patch and let things eat on thh older patch ....Assuming it works....

the lily pads I am concerned about making it through the construction fence holes. Time will tell.....I am sure it will have to be tweeked to get the ideal result. i will keep all your suggestions in mind, as i fail with my intial plan....LOL
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#290016 - 05/01/12 11:40 AM Re: Protecting Plants with cages [Re: RER]
RER Offline


Registered: 01/23/12
Posts: 1926
Loc: N FL
I did a little snorkeling this weekend and looked into the cages I installed in order to get some vegitaion going. I had planted spriggs on eel grass inside them. I was hoping the little spriggs had developed into nice sizced full plants. Did'nt notice any spreading yet but they went from single striggs about a couple inches long with a few roots on them into a healthy looking plant about 12 inches tall and nice and full....Good sign........The cages seemed to keep the carp away from the plants for now. The cages should be nice and full of eel grass by the end of the summer , I hope...
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#290029 - 05/01/12 01:39 PM Re: Protecting Plants with cages [Re: RER]
Bill Cody Offline
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Lunker

Registered: 04/18/02
Posts: 12767
Loc: Northwest Ohio - Malinta OH
Bobby - good update. Keep us informed on the growth. Do you know what type or strain of eel grass that you planted?
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#290049 - 05/01/12 03:21 PM Re: Protecting Plants with cages [Re: Bill Cody]
RER Offline


Registered: 01/23/12
Posts: 1926
Loc: N FL
Vallisneria americana

I think, I got it from the st johns river in north east florida around colle cove, st johns county.
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#336738 - 05/29/13 09:40 AM Re: Protecting Plants with cages [Re: RER]
RER Offline


Registered: 01/23/12
Posts: 1926
Loc: N FL
I posted this in part of my general pond up date post but thought I would continue in this more specific one as well

My plant cages seem to be helping. The eel grass has taken hold and doing great inside the cages and is trimmed neatly across the top from being nibbled on by fish. One cage that was a failed Lilly pad transplant was full of this grass and seemed to be a real magnet for the little CNBG. If it was not for the cages protecting the plants the pond would have zero plants. Its nice to not have FA or vegitation overgrowth issue. These cages seem to offer a few undwater oasis of plants for bugs small fish etc.










Edited by BobbyRice (05/29/13 05:00 PM)
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#337560 - 06/03/13 01:19 PM Re: Protecting Plants with cages [Re: RER]
RER Offline


Registered: 01/23/12
Posts: 1926
Loc: N FL
any one have an idea what the grass studd is, it was only growing about 6 inches tall from the bottom nice and thick like a lawn almost.
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