Water gardens and small ponds are very popular in today’s landscaping. While water gardens can add considerable beauty to your yard, they do require careful planning and care. Choosing the right water garden plants is important to maintain maximum pond health.
Water Garden Plants – Specimen Varieties
Some water garden plants are purchased mostly for their beauty. These specimen plants include water lilies, water hyacinth, flag iris, and other border plants such as reeds and cattails.
Whether flowering or not, these water garden plants do provide more than attractiveness. Border, or shallow water plants, help to provide habitats for fish, frogs, and insects. Birds also utilize them for nest building and perches. All these things contribute to water garden health by creating a natural ecosystem. Dangerous larvae, such as mosquito, will not be able to survive with predators nearby.
Surface plants like water lily and hyacinth provide safety from predatory birds and mammals. Fish and other water garden occupants can hide under their leaves. The floating roots of the water hyacinth provide a natural nursery for fish fry.
Water Garden Plants – Oxygenators
Oxygenating water garden plants are extremely important to the health of the pond and its occupants. These plants include Elodea, Pondweed, and Milfoil, and are either free-floating or anchored to the bottom of the pond.
These plants have mostly long stems with feathery fronds surrounding them. The high surface area of leaf means that they will filter water well and put out a lot of oxygen during photosynthesis. Some popular oxygenators, such as duckweed, float on the surface of the water. Their tiny leaves and bushy roots provide oxygen and shade to the water garden.
These water garden plants, more than any others, are responsible for much of the pond health. Not only is oxygen necessary to sustain animal and insect life, it also reduced algae blooms. Excessive algae is damaging to a water garden ecosystem. Besides, it just looks bad to have a scummy green mess in your yard.
Choosing the correct water garden plants for your backyard pond is an important step in maintaining its health. With a variety of attractive specimen plants, you will provide safety for fish, needed water filtration, and beauty. The more common-looking oxygenator plants will keep your oxygen levels high, reduce algae blooms, and provide hiding spots for fish and other wildlife.