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#36543 01/29/04 08:11 PM
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I'd like a post for reference on what plants would everyone plant if they had a chance to start over from scratch. What are the plants you would definitly put in, & the ones you would never put in?
My pond is almost finished. I only have some landscaping & structure to finish. I'll begin filling in March. Thinking of planting:
Submersables:(deep water) corkscrew eel grass or chara?
Water lillies or Lotis?
Marginals: (6" to 1') water iris, arrow arym, pickeral, maybe some Cana.
Pondside: Miscanthus, Large ferns, maybe papus grass?


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ric' i've been doing lot research this winter ,seeming there's to much snow and freezing out. i'm gunna try some lilies and some marginals.lilies and lotis can be planted in their own containers so you control them , once week you'll have to pull any dead leaves and flowers to keep them healthy and the dead stuff out of the pond. cut completely back for the winter and leave the pot below freeze line .the fish and my eyes should love them lol. the marginals can be potted also and controlled, in containers though you got to fertillze about once month to keep the growing good. think spring \:\)


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Up on shore is a little out of my zone, but I believe pampas grass can be invasive. Native grasses, native wild flowers and pines are nice along the banks, and they do not deposit the large amounts of organic matter into the pond that deciduous trees do.

In the water, both eel grass (Vallisineria americana) and Chara can be good choices, although Chara can grow profusely in certain conditions.

If you have the proper substrate, plant directly into the soil...not into pots. I would plant water lilies in 1-4 feet of water (depending on clarity) marginals like Arrowhead, Arrow Arum, Pickerel Weed, American Water Plantain, Hardstem Bulrush, Soft Rush, Spike Rush and Water Arum in 0-1 foot of water, and shoreline species like Blue Flag Iris, Sweetflag, Sedges (Carex spp.), Milkweed, Cardinal Flower, Ironweed and Marsh Marigold along the banks.

Do not plant Cattails or Burreed on new ponds, as they can take it over, making it a monoculture, which is no fun.


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One quick question, what about a larger lake/pond in the neighborhood of 8-10 acres. Should you plant anything in that situation or just let nature bring in whatever comes? I was hoping on making 'shelves' like that has been talked about on the board for plants to grow, but not become invasive. Thus providing shelter for forage and baby BGs as well as possibly providing some great ambush points for bass, making for great fishing.

So back to the original question, what type of grass/plant should I plant in a pond this size? Of course planting all of it will be impossible, but some of it could be done.

Chris

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Chris, I favor a combination of letting nature take her corse and introducing other native species. Basically, you should learn how to identify problem species, and eliminate them as you find them (sometimes easier said than done). By eliminating the invasive species, you will increase the potential for beneficial species to establish themselves & spread. Having said that, if there are no Arrowheads within miles of your house, don't expect them to pop up. Instead, introduce a moderate amount of several species of beneficial aquatic plants, and see which ones do well. It may happen that some die off and others take off.

As for which species, the same ones talked about above are fine...some may be better suited to different habitats than others...read individual descriptions from wherever you purchase them, or ask the supplier. The only difference with larger bodies of water is that they are more likely to be able to support beds of cattails or other invasive native plants without them becoming a major problem. However, I have seen plants like Phragmites (Common or Giant Reed) surround 5-6 acre ponds, creating an undesireable monoculture.


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Mike R.
I am looking for a type of rush that is common in the lakes of Minnesota. I like this type because it can grow in deeper water and emerges a few feet high, but it does not grow densely, so you can fish a spinner bait right through it and paddle a boat through it. It looks like what is referred to as Great Bulrush on Keystonehatcheries website.
Question: Do you think that this is the type of Bulrush that I am describing and do you think it will do well in central Missouri?


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Yes & Yes.

Great Bulrush is common in Midwestern Lakes, and occurs as you described. The only knock against it is that it can reach 10' tall under "ideal" conditions, which probably won't happen planted in a lake. If you want it to grow out into the water, probably go with Great Bulrush...if you want it to grow on the banks, I'd try Hardstem Bulrush, as it will generally stay under 5 feet.


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heres one example of water lilies planted directly in the pond , about 10 12 years ago , my friends pond. the liles own the pond, they are every where from 1 ft to 6 ft deep , you can only fish top water weedless or plastic weedless. there's bout 2 ft of muck in the pond from them not being trimed in the fall or removing dead stuff during the summer, only way he is going to make it nice is a long reach track hoe and clean it out. in containers i can control them 100%. i don't want my hard work ruined . the maginals i'll plant in 6" commercial gutters and i can move in and out as the water level drops,if need be. just some ideas. bank plants you always cut back.


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Good point Ken. If the pond is only six feet deep with 2 feet of silt, I wouldn't even consider water lilies. FYI, I have seen water lily tubers grow out of 6 gallon pots, so I'd even be careful with that.


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I had hoped to have responses to this post that we could refer anyone with relative questions to.
Ken, I'm sure your aproach works very well with small ponds, but could see it being a real hassle in larger ponds. However it could still be utilized with certain plants in limited locations.
Thanks for your response & suggestions Mike that's more what I was hoping for. Can you place orders with a specified delivery date?
Anyone else have a list of favorite plants or do not plant list?


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Ric, yes you can specify a delivery date, but keep in mind that suppliers in the north may not have product ready to ship until later in the spring...it all depends on the weather. Last year was a bad spring for plants because we had below normal temps all through May in our area. If you want plants early in the spring, you should look for a supplier from the south.


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Mike,
Thanks for your thoughts on the Bullrush. My new two acre lake is 19' deep with steep banks and I think this rush will provide some structure and cover in deeper water. I think I remember it growing in water up to 5' deep. I prefer this because you can fish in it and not get hung up. I am also looking for a lily pad with a white or yellow flower that would do good in the Midwest, but still be manageable. I don't want to mess with containers. Anyone have any preferences?


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I am also looking for plants to put in my 1 acre pond. How do you put in plants in existing ponds? How do you treat your pond for filimentous algea and not kill your plants?

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doddbldr2 - most algaecides esp Cutrine are copper based and have minimal toxicity to higher aquatic plants. Worst case with higher doses the algaecides will "burn" the leaves, but not kill.


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Water Lilies, planted with caution on large lakes or ponds, they need to be accessible for trimming every couple of years. Strong large hybrid varieties (less likely to drop fertile seed) might spread at 2' per year, not so bad in a paddling depth on a warm day... the coarser native varieties may spread 4' per year.

Native varieties like nuphar lutea, alba, odorata can not only spread aggressively in deep water they can drop a lot of fertile seed, very risky on a lake with considerable shallow areas. But then again, the lesser known nuphars like cape fear spatterock or nuphar pumilla minima might settle in quite sedate with spectacular marine like looks, by comparison quite easy to prune compared to the better known 'cow lily'

Lotus.... these can spread by tunneling rhisome 20' or 30' a year. Nuff said... They need cornering in an area easy to get at, say the neck of a stream or outlet

I don't know many varieties 'wise' to put in deep waters... Water crowfoot are good in flowing water, cabomba might do well, hornwort, potamogeton can make quite impressive and attractive stands for fish to skulk among though you may need to fret if they become to keen and mass up.

Alas I don't get to vist much in the way of deep lakes to explore here. If anyone knows lakes not so far from Raleigh of interest I can visit I would very much like to improve my local knowledge here :::nudge nudge::::

Of the cat tails, typha laxmanii is almost reasonable to control, though it may not do well in water more than 2' deep. Many a lake has been lost to Greater Reedmace, an impossible plant to control massing up x20 per year with a brutal tunneling rhisome, rip that out on sight, it will spring up from seed from our feathered friends. I'm sure it's 'Lake Woebegone' when Greater reedmace is allowed to establish

Once you are in the shallow water margin less than two feet deep there are lots of goodies, aquatic iris, arrow arum, pickerel, arrowhead, arum lily, lizards tail, cyperus, thalia, canna can cope with naturalising, not so bad to chop up for new positions when they get to sprawl. Even humble little plants like marsh pennywort and parrots feather can do a superb job of creating great habitat for raising tiddlers

North Carolina is a slightly tricky place for aquatics, many popular varieties that seem so promising on a garden centre shelf aren't really heat tolerant... mare's tail, marsh marigold, bog arum, bogbean can be tried only to fizzle out in a 'big heat'

I'd 'guestimate' that if you have some 20 plus varieties of aquatics established and massed on a pond, varieties which are not too difficult to control, you have quite a resource of juicey roots and nooks and crannies to encourage a host of beneficial tidbits either directly as 'salad' food or by stimulating a continuous supply of crustacean, caterpillars, crickets, snails, tadpoles etc for regular munchies.

Not only that, many of those plants will shelter fish from predators, hot sun, improve water quality especially regarding abstracting toxic metals and nitrites. Alas many lakes fall far short of that and fall into the category, of ermmm barren empty bodies of water

While a well planted pond (or where windblown leaves are the norm) may form up to 4" of silt per year, if you have a favourite couple of places for doing deep dredging sessions every couple of years or so, you will have perhaps one of the most fertile sources of top soil to play with, besides the biggest plumpest fish for supper

Regards, andy
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Ric:

You asked which vegetation species to introduce to your pond. I lean toward our friend Mike Robinson. Don't add any plants at all. Rather, let nature take her course and play with the cards you're dealt.

That said, we did a major feature a couple years back on the more desirable (controllable and native) plant varieties. Call the Pond Boss office, ask for our office whiz Nicole. Tell her you want the back copy with the article on "good" plants and "bad" plants.

Mark McDonald
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Thanks Mark,
I'll do that.


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Does anyone have any opinions about the use of scouring rush for bank stabilization?


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Hi Norm,

You might like to look at cyperus species suitable for your region. While scouring rush thrives well in an aquatic position its long lanky roots don't do much to form a structure which secures the ground it roots on

By comparison cyperus forms tough dense root networks in wet positions, it's the sort of plant you can put into a slumping river or canal bank and it will not only hold and secure its ground it will be easy to carve with a shovel

Regards, andy
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Thanks for the idea Andy. We have 10 Cyperus sp. native to the state. Most are annuals. The perennials grow only in sandy soil. I don't want to use reed canary grass and the bullrushes don't stablize the banks enough. That leaves me with prairie cord grass and perhaps streambank wheatgrass. We are getting quite a bit of bank erosion in some places. I'm lining the banks with concrete blocks in those places and want some plant to stabilize the soil around the blocks.


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Durn, if cyperus Longus isnt local, that is just the job for what you have in mind. It's a corker at plugging soggy spots. Pendulous sedge (Carex Pendula), perhaps?

Regards, Andy
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Parrot's feather, pickerel weed, arrowhead and iris pseudoacorus are listed as invasives in certain parts of the country. I would be extremely wary of planting any of these in my pond unless it did not have outflow and I was willing to exert the effort to manually keep under control.

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I have a 5-acre pond outside of Memphis, TN. It is irregular in shape and has some islands, mounds, etc. I would like to plant 3-4 different types of pond/water plants in and around the pond taking into account attractiveness, structure/habitat, and a food source for fish and waterfowl.

I am extremely sensitive to invasive plants because when we bought the land, the pond was only 3-acres and watershield covered almost 1-acre of the total surface.

Mark in Memphis

Also, where is a good source for these plants? I'd like to see a catalogue if one is available.

Mark

There are too many plants mentioned above for me to chhose from and I would like a specific recommendation for 4-5 of them.

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Here is a link that offers a great deal of information about a plant that helps stabilize areas prone to erosion. While most of the information deals with Asia, the plant, where available, is well worth looking at. When you read about it's virtues it might put you in mind of a snake oil salesman as it is a cure for so many things as well as a base for perfume.

I planted it around the perimeter of my pond and it has taken hold fairly well. It is not invasive, it grows in clumps and does not spread thorough rhisomes. The roots go as deep as 12', it does not seed.
http://www.vetiver.com/


1/4 & 3/4 acre ponds. A thousand miles from no where and there is no place I want to be...
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My favorite plant for our 6 acre lake in northeast Texas is the Louisiana water iris. It is indestructible. If your water level varies, this plant will survive a severe drought completely out of the water, and yet it is tall enough (3 feet) to grow in 2 feet of water.

The plant slowly spreads. In September you can divide exisitng plants to get the iris started in new locations.

The yellow bloom is pretty but not the best in the iris family. The main attribute of this plant is its hardiness.

Bob McFarland

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