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Wild Pond



I dug out a new wild pond last September, to give it plenty of time to establish before the coming spring. I added some native Hornwort a few weeks after the rain had filled it up, but I was wondering when the best time is, to add more native pond plants? 



  • LynLyn DevonPosts: 21,135

    If you go to a site they will only sell them at the time you can plant them, if you look in this site for instance you will see some available now some not. 

    Gardening on the wild, windy west side of Dartmoor. 

  • great link.. thanks

  • Do you have any photos of the pond currently? I doubt it's that critical when you add most plants, especially since the weatehr at the moment is pretty mild.

  • Here's a photo from this morning, everything is frozen.
    It has a bog around the parameter, which doesn't have any bog plants in yet, but the long term plan is to let this part of the garden grow long & wild. I'll also be adding some logs and rocks.

    I guess its best to wait for the end of March, before planting everything, but it would be nice to encourage some frogs, who I imagine prefer plants?




  • Looks pretty good so far. Frogs won't be too worried about the lack of plants (much more important for newts though). Have you thought about what plants you want, and are you planning to plant in baskets or straight into the shingle? I prefer the latter option.

    Potamogeton natans would be a good choice for the deeper area - not exactly pretty but supports a lot of wildlife and lets light through for the hornwort underneath (unlike lilies, which are generally poor for wildlife and can cast a lot of shade).

  • water lily's might be an idea if the pond gets a lot of sun, it will keep the water cooler and prevent a blanket weed invasion. just make sure you get a dwarf one otherwise it'll grow really large and take over!

    I would get some tall plants (irises are great (not flag iris - its way too big for a little pond) purple loosestrife is good, just make sure you dead head before it seeds otherwise it will take over. Marsh marigold is also quite good.

  • RedwingRedwing SussexPosts: 1,300

    If you want it to be 'wild', use native plants but as it is small, nothing that gets too big or that will take over.  You could try watermint, water forget-me-nots and marsh marigolds.


    Based in Sussex, I garden to encourage as many birds to my garden as possible.
  • FairygirlFairygirl west central ScotlandPosts: 48,932

    Keep mint contained - it's just like the garden kind - takes over!

    Carpenter - have you got a pic of the wider area - it will give us an idea of what other planting you have. Grasses are excellent near ponds - Carexes (avoid pendula though) and Hakonechloa are ideal. If you have them near the pond edges they'll hang over and soften the edges. For height - you can use Irises and the small bullrushes. The chrysographes irises are ideal - they like damp conditions. I have Equisetum in mine as well - great for anything emerging - like damselflies. A few easy pond plants like Caltha are good for cover for wildlfie. They'll grow in boggy conditions as well as being marginals. 

    You can gradually add planting if you want to connect the pond with the surrounding garden - that's always the best way with a wildlife pond. It should look like it's in harmony with the rest of the plot. 

    Have a look at some of the online specialists - you can pick plants that suit the conditions and look you want. Lyn's recommendation (Waterside) is the one I've used often. They do a good selection of waterlilies too  -  to suit all sizes of pond. image

    It's a place where beautiful isn't enough of a word....

  • I think water mint would actually be quite good growing free (not in a container) in the shallow areas of your pond. It does have long runners, but growing in (low nutrient) shingle rather than soil should restrain its vigour. Occasional pruning should be enough to keep it under control. It is also one of the very best marginal plants for wildlife, and goes an attractive red colour in the sun.

  • FairygirlFairygirl west central ScotlandPosts: 48,932

    philippa  - at my last house we inherited a very large pond. The water mint was contained in several large piles of tyres at one end - thankfully!  It was still trying to escape and I pulled a good bit away from the surroundings to let the other planting on the nearby bank get a chance.  It had also completely choked the other pond which was about 8 x 4  feet. It's very invasive when it gets going!


    philippa smith2 wrote (see)

      The pads rather than the frogs I meanimage



    Unless it's a very, very large frog......image image

    It's a place where beautiful isn't enough of a word....

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