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#100611 10/27/07 06:51 PM
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My uncle in rural NJ has a 1.25 acre farm pond (26 years old)that originally went up to 14 feet deep, but is now up to 11 feet deep in the deepest area with many shallow areas. I have learned alot about liming, fertilizing, etc. from your great website (I did lime this spring to get pH from 6.2 up to 7.5). I wish I had my own pond, but my uncle feels I have "adopted" his pond. We originally stocked it (LMB and BG)when new and was great for years and at some point (last 5 years) had a fish kill and only bluegill remained(coincided with a real bad winter). We added more bass and fatheads and it is doing well again. It is very barren (and always has been) from the standpoint of plants along the edge or in the water (erosion is occurring from wave action as the grass grows near the edge but not right up to it) and nothing really growing in the pond except some 1/2 inch tall "moss-like" algae on the bottom mud. In summer, we get some algae mats floating on the top. I know many people have issues with too many plants - we have the opposite issue - no plants and the baby BG disappear very quickly with the hungry LMB since there is nowhere to hide (we are adding some artificial cover like brush and rocks and pipes). Pond can also be muddy after rains, so I thought plants might help to stabilize everything.

On to my question: We planted some hardy lillies last fall which re-appeared this spring, so the soil cannot be too bad. We also planted some iris and pickerel weed, arrowhead, etc. around the edge to stabilize it and provide habitat. The lillies keep disappearing and we thought it was the red clay soil not being conducive to growing, but there are also many (20-30) geese that come and go throughout the year. I had read where they have caused havoc with plants in other locations. The plants on the edge do OK, but have not spread and some disappear (deer also show up to drink and eat, so that does not help) - we did plant the marginals in good topsoil we added since the clay is very tough to root in. I read where a wetland near Washington DC airport planted all kinds of nice water plants, only to have them eaten by geese. They are now looking at putting in cow lily (spatterdock) and arrow arum as they are supposedly not palatable to geese. Any thoughts??.

Any ideas on how to get some aquatic plants to grow (marginals and deeper plants) without shooting the geese (illegal here anyway without a permit, even though they are a pest and plentiful). i.e. what types of plants - has anyone heard of using spatterdock or arrow arum when geese are an issue. I am even contemplating cattails since nothing grows there for any time period with geese and deer (but cattails can be very invasive).

Also, any thoughts on adding yellow perch to the LMB/BG mix - will they compete too much with LMB (i.e. eat baby bass) and cause issues.

Sorry for all the questions, but I am new to this website and doing a brain dump right now.

Thanks, Pete

oldsconv #100614 10/27/07 09:10 PM
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For shallow water shore stabilization try some of the shorter spike rushes (6"-12") such as Least spike rush (Eleocharis acicularis)- wide habitat types or Small spike rush (E. parvula)- prefers more alkaline conditions. They grow along the edges in dense mats to protect from erosion. Other spike rushes will work but most of them as mature plants are more like reeds and taller (16"-3ft) . Arum would be a good plant. I would avoid spadderdock; it can be very probematic once well established. I have a local who is trying to get rid of his because it is taking over a 3/4 pond and growing in up to 8'-9' of water.


Yellow perch will not do well long term for you unless adults are stocked with adult LMB already present, especially if submerged weeds are scarse. Even then young perch will rarely survive to adulthood. Perch smaller than 8" will be easy LMbass food. One needs a different predator than LMB for YP to do well in a weed barren pond.

Last edited by Bill Cody; 10/27/07 09:18 PM.

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Bill Cody #100929 10/31/07 08:37 PM
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I've been wanting to add some non-invasive plants and flowers to my pond.
So arum would be good?
Could I get some more suggestions?


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zhkent #100931 10/31/07 08:59 PM
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zhkent #100932 10/31/07 09:06 PM
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This is a pretty good guide. Kansas Dept. of Wildlife may have one that is better for your area. This gives a description including photos of aqua plants how to propagate and get rid of them.

http://aquaplant.tamu.edu/index.htm

Here is another link that is put out by Mo. Wildlife Dept. & Ag. Dept. encouraging people to produce, sell, & purchase and use native plants, including water and bog ones. It is set to blue flag a wild native iris that lives in shallow water and bogs,(it has very pretty flowers and the rhizomes should hold soil well). There are pictures of it in the TX link too. But on the Mo. site you can search for other native plants and also search for places to purchase them. While searching you will learn a lot about other plants you may want to use.

http://www.grownative.org/index.cfm?fuseaction=plants.plantDetail&plant_id=107

The first Tx link will be easier to scan a wide varity of plants, get an idea of what you like then go to the Mo. link to find out more and where to buy.

Keep in mind it takes a while to get a good stand of most plants, even ones that can become invasive. I like coontail and Elodea, but they can get out of hand. The would provide good fry cover. In a pond my size I could use a rake or my hands to thin them out. With them I haven't gotten to that point. I did get to that point with water primrose but it was easy to thin out. Water primrose grows fast and could provide cover for fry, so can grasses that like to grow in shallow water. Also as your pond matures lots of emergent native plants will just appear. Some you might really like.

Since buying plants could get expensive I suggest you walk and wade around edges of back waters of near by lakes and bogs. Use common sense on what things could hold your edges and provide cover. By just taking time to see what grows where you will learn a lot. Consider what would be hard to thin out if you had too and what wouldn't be hard to thin out. You can nuke plants if necessay. I stay away from lilly pads, grow to deep, and you can't pull them out. They will just brake off and come back by the roots. Same with cattails, but there are different sedges I bet you can find growing around lowland areas including bar ditches, creeks, and lakes, and other peoples ponds that can't handle deep water and don't grow too tall so won't get out of hand. They grow pretty fast once establish. And really I bet you could dig up lots of bunches here and there that nobody would notice. For short-term and fast hold I would use them. I am sure you can find an also unlimited supply for the digging without hurting the place you are getting them from if you spread yourself out. The advantage of finding something in an almost unlimited supply.

Look on the Tx site for sedges, there are lots of different kinds. See what you have around where you live. Find a place where you can get a lot and not make a dent and the place can recover fast. Get out and walk and get muddy, you'll have fun and learn and find a lot. And when you mow leave a mow free zone around the pond edges at least until late summer or fall. Native plants that might blow in and do what you are trying to accomplish will be killed out by mowing. Most natives are not turf grass, they don't like being mowed.

Good luck.

Bill

Last edited by Bill Webb; 10/31/07 09:46 PM.

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oldsconv #100933 10/31/07 09:10 PM
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My problem is not anything taking over - nothing seems to grow at all, ever in 25 years. We only tried to plant stuff the last 2 years, but even before that, you would think cattails or something would have invaded over 25 years. As mentioned, water lillies go for a few weeks then disappear as well as edge plants, other than the iris we planted around the edge, that barely hangs on, but does not spread or flourish. I thought of arrow arum and spadderdock as I heard they are not palatable to geese. I think geese and deer are eating everything, maybe in conjunction with the red clay soil that probably has minimal nutrients. I am going to try again this year, or get the dog to chase away the geese. Any other comments are welcome.

oldsconv #100943 10/31/07 10:07 PM
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Geese will do in plants. I had some domesticated ones and I couldnt get many things started. Try some sedges, get deep roots and plant them deep where they cant pull them out. I noticed with my pet ones even stuff they didnt eat they like to pull up. Koyotes got all of my geese and I miss them but for that reason, and they liked to come and talk to me so never had quiet time at the pond, I havent replaced them.


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Bill Webb #100967 11/01/07 10:46 AM
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Be very careful of Elodea. It will actively grow in water that is deep (I have some growing in my pond up to about 12 to 15 feet deep) and other than with chemicals it is difficult to control. You cannot mechanically remove it because if any pieces break off during the removal process it will root elsewhere in the pond. Trust me on this.


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Ewest,
Something like in the picture, very nice.
Bill,
I have most of the shoreline rip-rapped so erosion isn't a problem. After finally getting the cattails eradicated because they took over the shoreline at one time, I am just looking for one or two types of flowers to plant that will not invade the pond.
I would be a bit nervous about transplanting plants from the wild, afraid I will introduce something invasive.
The cattails almost won.


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That's true Jeff, but I would never want to eliminate it, just control it.

Last edited by Bill Webb; 11/03/07 08:33 AM.

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