Background: I live in southern IL and have a two year old pond (will be 3 years old this summer) that is right at 3 acres when completely full. Last summer was the first summer with any natural vegetation showing up, lots of primrose. I did not treat it at all and let it all do its thing. I also planted some bare root cypress trees that are about 2-3 feet tall currently. The pond is stocked with Red Ear, Native Bluegill, Largemouth Bass, Golden Shiners, and FatHead minnows. All of the fish are doing very well.
My question is what vegetation can I add to the pond that will not take over and not have to be treated with chemicals to control it. I do have a neck in the pond that is about 5 foot deep moving up to very shallow that the primrose really took over. I have a pretty good amount of 5-7' deep water and then tappering off to about a 1/3 acre of 15-16' at the deepest. I would like to have some grasses or something in the water that is fishable habitat. One of the lakes that I often fish (Cedar Lake, IL) has a lot of coontail but I have seen that take over so I don't really want to add that. Open to suggestions, and thanks for the help!!
and yes, I have been reading the magazine and posts since 2020 and this is my first post!
Spatterdock is a great plant in the presence of Grass Carp, juss saying. If you have some depth to your pond and a small littoral zone they are a very useful plant. Beavers are the only real predation of Spatterdock that I have seen.
All pond vegetation spreads, that is what plants do as nature demands; some spread faster than others. . If you do the lilies there are 4 hybrid varieties or types of area spread and depth they grow starting with slowest, shallowest first. Dwarf, Small, Medium, Large. Buy them according to where and depth you want then to grow. All these do not spread nearly as fast as Spadderdock and wild native white water lily. Both have fertile seeds that float to other areas. .I've seen spadderdock once well established with huge roots 4" wide 6ft-8ftr long, take over a 3/4 ac pond 16ft deep. I have seen wild white lilies spread and take over a shallow pond corner out to 7ft deep in 3 yrs with fertile seeds and fragments of the rhizome easily breaking off, floating and regrowing where ever they float to, Eel grass native Vallisneria americana helps produce clearer water, fish can hunt through it and it can grow 6ft tall down to 18ft deep as it tends to make the water clearer. Water clarity allows most all submerged vegetation to grow where ever there is light penetration. American pondweed (aka long leaf) stays fairly shallow 3-4ft maybe 5ft due to its floating leaves and growth habit. Choose the right plant for your purpose. You don't plant huge growing trees 2 ft from the house.