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#450400 06/23/16 10:52 AM
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Hey there, community. While I notice that most questions have answers buried somewhere in the forum, I'm having trouble finding information about what kinds of tree are best to plant around a pond. The information I have found indicated that fish benefit from overhanging trees, willow trees are to be avoided, and don't plant trees on a dam. But does anyone have experience/ advice about what kind of tree will do best at the waters edge? I live in Tennessee, zone 6, with gravelly soil. My two acre pond has one small pine tree by the water and I'm looking for a solution both my eyes and the fish will enjoy.

Willbilly #450401 06/23/16 10:57 AM
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If I was planting trees that like wet feet, I would choose bald cypress.

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dg84s #450460 06/23/16 10:37 PM
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Another vote for Bald Cypress.


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Willbilly #450483 06/24/16 11:11 AM
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Hi Will! I am in the same boat, except I have a brand new pond with only man made structure that I have put in my self, But I knew I wanted trees in the pond and living in FL bald cypress a natural choice, I have grew up fishing around them my whole life and knew fish love to hang out around them. So I looked around and couldnt find and around the tree farms here. Believe it or not I found a lot of 10 trees for sale on Ebay for $50 bucks lol, I had my doubts and ordered them. they came my house in a box and looked like a bundle of sticks but potted them up with garden soil and they took off, the pictures show 3 weeks of growth! had only one not make it. I am gonna try to get some more and when the water level gets higher is when I plan on planting them, until then they will enjoy the good life and get a head start being potted up and watered regularly. Hope my lil story helps you!



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Willbilly #450491 06/24/16 02:30 PM
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Cypress will do well in your location if planted next to the water. They do shed lots of debris though. I planted one in a wet place in the backyard of a house I built in NW Arkansas in 1998. I think I planted it in 1999 or so. When I sold and moved out here in 2013, it was already a good shade tree with lots of knees extending toward the drainage ditch behind my property. They grow fast and are nice looking trees. I think I bought it from Lowes as a 2 gallon bucket tree about 3 feet tall, and didn't pay much. The knees extending into the pond would make good fish cover.

Willbilly #450521 06/25/16 02:07 AM
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Thanks for the input and experience! I would have never considered this tree as I assumed it only grew in hot swamps. After a little research, I learned that this tree can grow in zones 10-4! That is pretty far North for a swamp tree. I will have to research a bit more to see if the tree will take in my rocky soil. Again, thank you all.

Willbilly #450523 06/25/16 02:30 AM
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You will have a prevailing wind most of the time, probably from the southwest. I plant trees pines, spruces on this side so there are no leaves bowing into the water. On the other side I plant trees with leaves that will mostly blow away from the pond. However I love Weeping Willows and have planted one along with the pines and spruces. They have small leaves and have much less impact then large leaves would have blowing into the pond.


Willbilly #450760 06/28/16 03:19 PM
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Dinsmoreoutdoors, thanks for your story and pictures. I'm very surprised to find trees for sale on ebay, but there seems to be a good selection there. Turns out this tree grows in most kinds of soil and is very low maintenance, the perfect tree for my needs.

Willbilly #450778 06/28/16 07:00 PM
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Bald Cyprus can even be planted in the water to create the "knees". Just plant shallow enough to where the leaves are out of the water. the taller the sappling, the deeper the water it can be planted in...

A cautionary note on willows...they ARE often pretty, and always highly invasive, growing from sucker roots and fragmentation...

Last edited by Rainman; 06/28/16 07:01 PM.


Willbilly #451043 07/01/16 04:55 PM
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I just purchased six 6-7 foot bald cypress trees from a nursery website, they should arrive in about a week. I'll post pictures, if anyone is interested. Although the taller young trees were more expensive, the benefits of being able to plant them at any time and any location (including a shallow area of the pond) without having to worry so much about frequent care... justified the purchase. I really do hope to get some knees, Rainman. I'll bet they would (eventually) make great habitat for fish.

Also, willows have been completely removed from consideration. Apparently the droppings can be toxic in the water and adult trees drink 50 gallons of water a day!

Willbilly #451044 07/01/16 07:10 PM
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I've got pond cypress all around my .5 acre pond. They are really pretty and love the reddish orange colors in the fall, but I've been concerned about how much water they drink a day. Have two that are probably over 50ft tall. And maybe 20-30 in the 10 to 20ft tall range not to mention sapling everywhere. I also have pine and oaks. I can not maintain a full pond. Even with all the rains we've had this spring the water recedes at about 3-6 inches a day.
Are cypress big water suckers?

Willbilly #451929 07/14/16 04:19 PM
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Half my order of Bald Cypress arrived! I can't wait to get these suckers in the ground. Maybe even a few in the water!

Willbilly #457728 10/16/16 08:05 PM
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Update: planted the trees very close to the water, dumping a bunch of plant food in the hole prior to planting. They already seem to be doing very well and I might only have lost one due to some animal digging at the roots. Possibly a raccoon, judging from tracks. In the future (and a note to anyone else) I will buy a plastic circular mat to place around the base of the tree right off the bat. The mats seem to have kept digging animals at bay, but might have been too late for one tree. Will update again next year when things get green again.


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