Plants for pond edge

Hi everyone,

We made a pond last Autumn, and it is still a work in progress:

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I've got some plants in the beds next to the pond, and the trellis will hopefully be covered in the future with a jasmine and honeysuckle. I want to get the pond edges planted up too so that it provides more cover for the birds and wildlife.

There is an area behind the hibernaculum and fence (top right of photo 1, bottom right of photo 2) where I'd quite like to have something like ferns along the back, but am unsure which types would be best for a wildlife pond - assuming they are beneficial? We've got some logs so I thought it'd be nice to pile some logs there and then have some ferns growing.

At the front of the pond we're going to allow the grass to grow up to the rocks, possibly with some crevice plants too. To the right of the pebble beach we've got a vinca minor planted, which I'm hoping will give some cover leading up to the beach. To the left of the pond there's a cotoneaster planted, and behind and to the right (photo 2) there's a dogwood.

The area between the fence and back of the pond, to the left of the calluna, I'd like to plant with some low/non maintenance plants as it's difficult to reach. I did plant another vinca minor there but I'm not sure if it's doing so well at the moment. 

Then there's the remaining area around the hibernaculum/mini rockery which needs some more plants added. It's hard to plant there because of minimum soil depth so would crevice plants be the best option?

So, if anyone has any advice for good ferns, pond edge plants, crevice plants etc it'd be much appreciated. Preferably all beneficial for wildlife. 

Lucid image

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  • FairygirlFairygirl west central ScotlandPosts: 25,301

    Hi Lucid, grasses are a really good choice for ponds. Many are evergreen so they're good for softening edges. Carexes are really easy and readily available. Look at Evergold. Hakonechloa is lovely and bright, though not evergreen, and makes a nice mound. Beregenias might be useful too, they prefer a bit of shade, but offer nice big leaves fro little creatures to hide under. Caltha palustris is happy as a marginal or in a  damp or boggy area. No maintenance, and yellow flowers for spring. 

    There are ferns for dry as well as damp areas, so you'll be able to find suitable ones. The Hart's Tongue ferns are evergreen and really useful. I've always had those beside ponds I've had. Asplenium scolopendrium is it's proper name.

    Don't overlook Phormiums for sunnier areas - they provide good cover and you can get loads of different varieties and sizes. Good drainage needed for them.

    Hope that's a few ideas to start with image

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


  • LucidLucid Posts: 320
    Thanks for your very useful suggestions Fairygirl, I'll look in to all of those. I like the sound of the Carex Evergold so I think we may go for that with some ferns.



    Has anyone got ideas for crevice plants to grow between the rocks? We've got an aubrieta on the rockery, but I'm not sure if it's too happy there. A couple of the leaves have turned white!



    Lucid image
  • CeresCeres Posts: 1,770

    Your pond looks lovely. So much nicer than the monstrosity that I inherited (green with envy). I have planted creeping thyme around the slabs (yes, slabs.....no lovely rocks) in an attempt to disguise the horror and I can attest to the fact that creeping thyme loves growing in crevices and spreads well, plus it attracts a lot of insects when it is in flower. It hugs the ground so doesn't obscure the view of other plants.

  • FairygirlFairygirl west central ScotlandPosts: 25,301

    I'm assuming you mean the area that's built up to one side, and not the rocks right round the pond? Poke in some saxifrages, sedums and arabis and see how they get on Lucid. You may need to fix some little pieces of wire mesh to hold them in till they establish, and keep them well watered till they find their feet. If you can use some ordinary garden soil, that might be easier.  There are little ferns which are happy in that situation, though the name of them escapes me. Thrift might do ok there too. That kind of thing can be tricky. 

    For the area round the edges I'd plant that all to hide most of the rocks as it seems a lot higher than the rest of the surrounding area. That will bridge the gap. Either that, or you'll need to build up the soil level in a slope, or extend the gravelly beach area. Bear in mind that it will be difficult to cut the grass right up to those rocks if you turf it.

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


  • LucidLucid Posts: 320
    Thanks Ceres, I'm hoping it'll really take off once the plants in and around it spread. Creeping thyme looks great so I think we'll definitely try some of that.



    Fairygirl - yes the hibernaculum/rockery mound on the bottom right of photo 2 (with mini bug hotel too). I will probably add a little more soil there but due to rocks there's not a lot of planting depth. We've got a thrift planted there at the moment which seems to have survived so far. I'll check out the saxifrages and sedums.



    For the edges there are and will be things planted up thanks to the suggestions above, it just looks a little bare for now. The front edge we're going have grass and planned to let it grow longer, although I might want to try something like creeping thyme in a couple of spots too.



    Inside the pond there's some purple loosestrife and flowering rush so of they're definitely coming back after winter then they'll obscure some of the edges too.



    Lucid image
  • FairygirlFairygirl west central ScotlandPosts: 25,301

    It will be great Lucid  image

    A few evergreens will help to blend it all in. If you can incorporate a slightly boggy area at one end you can grow lots more too. Line with some pond liner and make a few holes in the bottom. Layer of gravel then soil on top. There are lots of bog lovers and damp ground lovers which will thrive and add to your whole picture. Astilbes, Primulas, Solomon's Seal etc  image

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


  • Hostafan1Hostafan1 Posts: 21,297

    HOSTAS

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    Devon.
  • FairygirlFairygirl west central ScotlandPosts: 25,301

    Wondered when you'd appear Hosta!  image

    Great for overhanging a pond edge. The plants - not you Hostie  image image

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


  • LucidLucid Posts: 320
    Thanks Hostafan1. I'll look in to them - I know they're very popular but is it right that the slugs love them too?



    Lucid image
  • Hostafan1Hostafan1 Posts: 21,297

    Lucid, slugs do love them, but frogs love to eat slugs, as do blackbirds and thrushes.

    Devon.
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