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Farm pond

Hello folks,

First forum post so bear with me.

Where I moved house to on our farm we have a large pond 30 seconds down from the house in one of the unused fields. This summer I have spent some time planting some saplings down there (hawthorn, alder and birch) and cutting back alot of the long grass so that I could move my 3 beehives down to it. 

So my question is what sort of flowers/ bushes/ shrubs would I be able to plant down there that would preferably self seed/be able to leave alone to spread but be able to compete with the grass and rubbish that grows down there at a rate of knots. The ground is fairly wet and boggy in certain low areas. It gets full sun all day. Something colourful and hardy would be nice! Oh also, I live in the North East of Scotland so it is fairly warm over summer but can get pretty cold.

I welcome your suggestions and it's nice to meet you all :)


  • ButtercupdaysButtercupdays Posts: 3,215
    Be careful what you wish for! My personal preference in that situation would be to stick pretty much with British native wildflowers that will be sure to be hardy and that the bees will enjoy. There are other things I can suggest too, but if spreaders are happy they will spread and how. Are you sure you are ready for that?
    The boggy, wet areas and pond suggest Iris pseudacorus and meadowsweet (Filipendula ulmaria) and you could add the related Astilbes if you don't want to stick to native alone, Eupatorium, primroses too, in damp rather than boggy places, once your trees are giving a little shade. There are a number of Persicarias of various sizes, all pretty, all tough, to choose from, but they will need some watching as they have world domination in their sights!
    In the drier areas, almost any of the hardy geraniums, (not all native,but they act like they are) oxeye daisies, knapweed, betony are all colourful and tough.
    Don't forget to allow room for the usual grassland 'weeds': buttercups, daisies, clover and dandelions, which will all be appreciated by your bees. You may well find other things appearing of their own accord if the habitat is right.
    All these grow in my garden and we've had minus  12 for two weeks and regular heavy snowfalls in recent winters. Not the last one though, climate change is showing how things may become.
  • josusa47josusa47 Posts: 3,532
    Common elder is native, tough as old boots, the insects will appreciate the flowers and the birds the berries.  Likewise teasels:  flowers for the bees, seed for the birds.
  • nick615nick615 Posts: 584
    You don't mention whether or not you have fish in the pond?  If so, and if they grow that far north, rhododendrons can produce bankside cover for fish.
  • Thank you for all the information!  Looks like I'll be needing to get a heap of geranium, knapweed and betony then. The Meadowsweet and Teasels also seem like they would fit in nicely down there too. There will still be plenty room for the usual 'grassland weeds' around the pond and they are pretty rife in the grazing fields we have that aren't filled with barley also. 

    No fish in the pond, it was the inital plan to have it as a small fly pond but we have a leak into the burn that we can't get plugged up to get her deep enough permanently. Maybe one day if we can get a hold of a slew digger! Although one of my neighbours has some pretty massive Azaleas - maybe see if i can pinch some cuttings from her if i ask nicely :)
  • Are Betony better planted at the end of summer/autumn? I see they need cold weather for germination?

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