Pond plants

C.A.
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12:07 AM - Mar 11, 2004 #1

I've decided its time to give my pond plants a spot of tlc (usually the kiss of death to any plant but I do try!!) They are in small black plastic pond baskets. I think they need to be potted-on. My problem is that the roots have come through the holes and I can't imagine being able to transplant them without breaking the roots.
a) Should I just 'plant' the small pot into a larger one?
b) Should I force the plant out of the pot and hope that broken roots don't affect it too much?
While thinking about pond plants - I find that the baskets are very 'floaty' and need anchoring. I've attempted to put a rock in/attached to each pot. How do other people stop their plants for going for a swim in the deep bit?
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MacT1
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1:41 AM - Mar 11, 2004 #2

Don't think broken roots will make any difference to the plant still growing CA ........I just cut old baskets away of necessary and split up plant as you would a herbacious one . I have pebbles in my pond which are useful to help anchor pots down but when I repot I always put small stone ( we call them chuckies up here ) on top of the pot and that helps anchor them down as well.
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C.A.
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7:39 PM - Mar 11, 2004 #3

I've got pebbles on mine too Mac - trouble is the ducks stand on 'em and they wobble off the ledge.
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kitty58
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11:40 PM - Mar 12, 2004 #4

I put stones on mine and they fall off. Thinking of dividing plants and putting stones in the bottom of the basket first.

Kitty



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C.A.
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10:21 PM - Mar 13, 2004 #5

I put a rock in each pot - but have to remember which side its on and make sure that it goes towards the edge of the pond - otherwise the extra weight helps it topple into the deep bit even quicker than without!!
Yesterday the ducks toppled a pot about 10 mins after OH had replaced it. Its about time the ducks went off and laid eggs somewhere . . . but then the seagulls take on the toppling duty!
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AJC
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12:18 AM - Mar 14, 2004 #6

i just chop of the roots that stick out, repot it in a biggere basket and put sone gravel oer the soil, always worked for me.
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PaulineM
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7:38 AM - Mar 14, 2004 #7

Just a thought - depending on your taste and how big your pond is:
I inherited a small pond in which the marginals were either taking over or sitting sulking, according to vigour. So I hauled them all out of the pond itself and put them in 'damp beds' by the side of the pond.
Making a damp bed is easy - just dig a hole, line it with polythene, pierce a few holes in the bottom and plant in it as normal.
The advantage is that you can make your 'plant pot' any size you like, and I thought it looked rather nice too.


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C.A.
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4:49 PM - Mar 14, 2004 #8

I like that idea Pauline, especially as the ducks have knocked another pot down into the deep bit .

How big a hole did you dig - one for each plant or a huge one? I wanted to make a boggy section next to the pond but OH thought that digging too big a hole next to the filled concrete pond might make the sides vunerable to collapsing when not backed by earth.
On thinking about it, I guess your system could be applied anywhere in the garden where there are plants which need moist conditions.
I can't understand why it is that I always want shade-loving and moisture-requiring plants in my sunny dry garden! Must be something to do with being a contrary female!!
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PaulineM
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8:11 PM - Mar 14, 2004 #9

I did a hole for each one, Chris Ann. Partly because one of the Irises was pseudacorus - which would take over the entire world if given half a chance - next to the rather more delicate ensata, and partly because I happened to have big-enough sheets of polythene lying around if I did it that way.
Depth? Can't accurately remember, so I just looked it up, and it says: at least 18" (45cm). Hmm. Think I gave up rather before reaching that depth! But I just looked at the roots on the pseudacorus, which had extended way beyond and below the original measly little container, and made it deep enough for them. Maybe I bonsai'd them a bit?
Doing individual holes would also mean that you wouldn't need to worry about your pond walls and you can shove any plant you like between your moisture-lovers. There's that big fern that'll grow just about anywhere, for instance (Male fern?) - would associate well with the moisture-lovers but doesn't actually need the moisture.
Not that I actually worry about it too much - the plant on the left of my little group is a chrysanthemum, of all things, and Creeping Jenny used to ramble happily through the whole lot.
I think your pond would look great with the marginals 'outside' it.
One more thing in mine - I built a sort of 'staircase' out of old bits of crazy paving on the marginal shelf. The theory was to allow the odd hedgehog that might fall in to be able to get out. The practice turned out to be somewhere for birds of all sizes to drink and bathe.
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Pondlace
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1:29 PM - Mar 16, 2004 #10

Hi.
I am new on the forum. I love gardening, it is my hook on sanity, keeps me "grounded" (sometimes).
A few years ago, I put in a nice little pond in my backyard. I have several plants in black plastic pots. There isn't enough water circulation going through the roots and I am getting the black goo that comes with anaerobic processes. My fish die by spring, probably from the gasses building up ( the pond is 3ft deep). I don't have the top of the pond open as I have 2 dogs that may fall in if they are unaware of the thin ice. I would like to find some kind of container to allow the roots/soil better circulation so the plants do better and there is no gaseous build-up. Any suggestions? I have a Pict of my pond but I don't know how to post it.
Thanks.
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salli c
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7:02 PM - Mar 16, 2004 #11

and to RG. In the UK you can buy aquatic planting baskets. These sound like they may be what you are looking for.


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Pondlace
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11:33 PM - Mar 16, 2004 #12

I am in Michigan, USA. I have not been able to find baskets large or strong enough to support the plants that I have (Iris, Lilies, etc). I have them in plastic tubs that have been used for landscape trees. I have tried to cut slots or holes in them, using lining to contain the roots, but it isn't working. The only water baskets I have found on the market here are about 4L size or smaller (way too small). I have an enameled drum taken from an old washing machine. I was thinking about transplanting my Mayla Lily into it. I need more large containers though. Any other ideas?
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PaulineM
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10:07 AM - Mar 17, 2004 #13

Hello Pondlace.
First of all, for help on posting pictures start by looking here (in the Information & Help forum).
Secondly, what size is your little pond?
For planting baskets, Id have thought the largest size of planting basket shown here would accommodate your water-lily if you do an Internet search Im sure youd find other mail-order suppliers.
And finally, Im rather worried about this covering of the pond in Winter what do you cover it with? Even persistent ice is enough to kill the fish due to build-up of carbon-dioxide, because the surface of a pond is effectively the lung through which it breathes. If you dont keep an area open by melting a hole each day, then a pond-heater will keep an area of the surface ice-free.
Id try to find (or make) some metal mesh structure to cover it, and/or consider moving the fish to an aquarium for the winter. Otherwise youre just suffocating the poor things.
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MontanaDun
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12:04 PM - Mar 17, 2004 #14

Well- I guess this sounds a bit hard hearted, but my dogs only fell in once! After that they figured out how to stay out of the pond. Although the plants are close enough to the edge that the pups could climb out if they did happen to tumble in.
The bigger problem is if you have a dog that LIKES taking a dip in the pond. Thank goodness we don't have to deal with that!
K.
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Pondlace
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11:45 AM - Mar 18, 2004 #15

Thank you for your responses. I have added a few picts of my pond to this posting (thanks Pauline for the help) to show the pond and the trouble I have with it in the winter. The pond is about 12 x 8 feet and about 3 feet deep. The snow is about 2-3 feet deep and the ice is several inches. That is what I meant as cover. You are probably right, MontanaDun, that the dogs won't fall in more than once! I don't have water loving dogs!
As far as the pots are concerned, it seems that a pot of 14 inches doesn't seem large enough for lilies. They grow so many roots and very quickly. The iris's also need larger pots. (The mini cat tails need a small pot for containment!)
Thanks again for your help. Will get me thinking some more.
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Pondlace
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11:50 AM - Mar 18, 2004 #16

Sorry, I forgot to add the picts!
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PaulineM
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12:08 PM - Mar 18, 2004 #17

That's pretty deep for the size - is that to allow for temperature stabilisation in an extreme climate?
I'm afraid the roots will escape from any perforated pot, even the fine-mesh plastic ones. For water-lilies this can be a Good Thing, as it allows them to spread their roots into the sludge that inevitably builds up on the bottom and grow into bigger plants.
As for the marginals, I think you need either to plant them outside the liner as suggested above, or bite the bullet and be prepared to drag them out, prune off all wandering roots and divide & replant them as often as necessary to stop them taking over.
It's also said that, while in a new pond growth is fast and furious, after a few years the nutrients in the water diminish and it slows down. I can't vouch for this as I've never managed to stay in the same place long enough to see for myself!
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Pondlace
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12:17 AM - Mar 19, 2004 #18

For some reason, the picts didn't come out that I tried to post of my pond. Oh well.
I have it 3 ft deep in-spite of the boundary size because of the weather. The sides of the pond are almost perpendicular which adds water volume but I accommodate the smaller plants with reinforced shelves of different depths. At the time, I made the pond before reading much about how to do it. My next pond will include a bog garden (and perhaps different dimensions). I would so love to have a Lotus and carnivorous plants. I understand that some of the larger lilies like deeper water. Mayla is a large one, although it doesn't compare with the beautiful tropical selections.
I will try to get a surface heater. There is a wonderful pond store less than an hour from me that I like to go to and I know they will have a heater. I haven't seen baskets that I like there though.
You mentioned that the water looses it nutrients. I have cleaned out the pond each spring to assure the quality of what lives in it. Some of the snails die (always 100 more to replace each dead one-there must be thousands), the fish as I have mentioned and oak leaves that have blown in, etc. I have tried to keep the decomposition down to a low roar. Is this a bad practice?
This year, I will have to lift up my lilies and divide/re-pot them along with several of my marginals. It would be a good time to get better pots for them if it is possible.
Thanks for your advice.
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Pondlace
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1:06 AM - Mar 19, 2004 #19

OK, now I will follow the help instructions given to me. I am so not good with computers! (or instructions sometimes)
Here is the URL addy for my pond picts. -different seasons.


thanks for the patience!
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PaulineM
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9:49 AM - Mar 19, 2004 #20

Sorry to burrow into your posting, but when I saw that picture I had to make it show up - it's ravishing! I'll add some comments on what you say just as soon as I've got over this fit of jealousy at how beautiful it is!
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salli c
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11:00 AM - Mar 19, 2004 #21

Wow Pondlace! I'm gobsmacked - that is beautiful

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Saph5
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5:56 PM - Mar 19, 2004 #22

That is stunning Pondlace, I'm very envious.
Edited to ask Pondlace what the plants are on the right of the pond, as we look at it. The pink and purple ones.
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C.A.
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10:25 PM - Mar 19, 2004 #23

Wow!!

What a wonderful pond - why doesn't mine look like that? I guess because I haven't planted those plants . . . but I'm taking notes.
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Pondlace
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1:55 AM - Mar 20, 2004 #24

Thank you all for your compliments! My gardening is amateur and always a work in progress. I see what I like and I use it. That is as far as the knowledge goes.
I have lived in this house about 9yrs. Each year, I pick another corner to do a garden of sorts. A few years ago, it was this pond. I used my vacation time building it. My son helped dig. I was extremely stressed by work at the time. By the time 2wks of 12-14hr days, the pond was operational and I could go back to work refreshed. I don't think my hands could have taken anymore fun anyway. They were bleeding and roughed up pretty badly by then (have never worn gloves... need to feel the dirt). The rest of me wasn't in much better shape but what fun it was!...best vacation I ever had!
The pink and purple plants on the right are simply wave petunias. I put "Rainbow" sandstone around pond boarder. Even though the stone is nice, stone seems so dead and cold so I don't like to see it. I hide as much as I can with annuals. One year I used different colors of sweet potato vine. I usually pick different annuals each year or I would get bored.
Some of the perennials that I have used that are less visible in the pict include Day Lilies, dwarf Dianthus, Lupine, various Astilbe, dwarf Bleeding Heart, different Hostas, Soapwort, Spiderwort (pink and blue), Heuchera and some others I can't think of now. I planted a Snakeroot behind the pond between a couple of pines. It is moist and very shaded. It isn't doing anything. It is alive but not growing. Don't know what is wrong, maybe not enough sun. Between all of my perennials go more annuals. Have to save up all year to get enough plants.
Thanks again for the compliments! Feels good. Am learning so much from all of you!
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C.A.
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9:53 AM - Mar 20, 2004 #25

Could you fill in your profile please Pondlace. If you don't want to say too much about yourself at least mention whereabouts you garden? It helps our 'experts' when they come to give you advice (doesn't help me as I'm no expert - just nosey!!).
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salli c
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5:09 PM - Mar 20, 2004 #26

CA


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PaulineM
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6:10 PM - Mar 20, 2004 #27

Hi again, Pondlace, after several more envious looks at your pic I think I'm calm enough to talk ponds again!
I'm not sure what you mean about cleaning out the pond each Spring. The advice I always followed was to prune back oxygenators and marginals, and take off fading water-lily leaves, in Autumn, and at the same time to give it a half water-change. Literally by pumping out half the water and then refilling. I found that if I refilled it very slowly - just a trickle from the hose - I could get away without treating the water.
Also, as there were a lot of trees around, I used to stretch a net over the pond in Autumn to make it easier to collect the leaves as they fell.
Some people like to do a half water-change in Spring too, but this increases the risk of an algal bloom before the plants have time to cover the surface.
If the balance beween plants and fish is right, mature water is much better for wildlife. You'll know you've got it right when there's an explosion in the fish population!
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Pondlace
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12:24 AM - Mar 23, 2004 #28

Finally figured out how to edit the profile. Hope it helps.
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C.A.
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12:43 AM - Mar 23, 2004 #29

Thanks Pondlace
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