Planting Aquatic Plants in your Garden Pond.
Aquatic Plants are normally sunk into the pond in basket
containers - normally plastic. In theory, this allows the pond
gardener to easily lift the plants for re-positioning or other
cultural activities - such as plant propagation or simply
dividing overgrown pond plants.
The reality is often different, as the mature plants take
advantage of the holes in the mesh containers and spread their
roots far and wide. Nonetheless, basket planting is still the
best way that we know of for planting aquatics in small to
medium size ponds.
Do not use any form of
metal baskets. Wooden baskets can be used if you are 100%
certain that is harbours no disease or harmful 'preservative'
chemicals. Far better stick with plastic baskets for your pond
planting - easier to clean, and do not normally rot.
Before planting any pond plants - and
in particular water lilies (Nymphaea) Take off any dead or damaged leaves,
and any visible damaged roots portions.
- Firstly line the basket container with sacking or corrugated card.
This will prevent any initial spillage of compost as you position the
plant, and also help to retain the compost in the container once in the
pond. After a while, the compost will solidify in the submerged
container and the small amount of spillage will be no problem. May even
be desirable to ahve a little bit of soil at the bottom of the pond -
just like real nature!
- The basket should be filled about halfway with aquatic compost after
lining - ready to position and plant your aquatic plant. At this time,
it is a good idea to trim off any surplus sacking or other lining.
- Position the plant in the centre
of the basket - holding it by its stem and not by the roots. The roots
can easily become damaged if handled. Ad further compost and gently firm
until the soil/compost is within an inch or so (25-50mm) from the top of
- Top up the compost with medium sized pebbles, rather than shingle.
This will stop all but the largest bottom feeding fish from throwing
your soil about down below!
- Water the container thoroughly to allow the soil and plant to settle
in and firm up.
- Lower the basket container carefully into position, using string
threaded through the mesh. Don't forget that you need the string to
release once the basket is in the water, so do not tie it to the basket.
- Don't worry about the inevitable bit of cloudiness as the soil
percolates into the water. It will soon clear.
- Job Done.