How to Care for Aquatic Plants

Now that spring is here, it is time to care for your outdoor plants. Spring is the time plants start to increase their growth, so maintenance and care is so important during this time of the year. We will share a little bit about different types of plants, but if you have specific questions about a certain genus of aquatic plants you should ask your local aquatic plant supplier. 

Floating Aquatic Plants

Adding floating aquatic plants are a low maintenance option for your pond. Do not add floating plants until temperatures in your have warmed up. Start the season by adding plants that cover no more than 20% of the surface of your pond. Do not let these plant cover more than 50% of your pond. It will be good to have the additional coverage in summer to prevent algae growth, but you do not want too much sunlight lost from reaching the water which would happen with more than 50% coverage. Do not add these plants into a pond with a skimmer. 

Submerged Aquatic Plants

Adding submerged aquatic plants are another low maintenance plant option. Place the plant in an aquatic plant basket with pea gravel to allow water to reach the roots and weight down the plant basket. The roots will not expand past the basket, but if the width of the plant expands wider than what you would like simple pull the plant out by the plant basket and prune the plant back. The plant should not grow to the surface of the water, so also trim back if the plants height reaches the surface of the water.

Emergent Aquatic Plants

If you plan to add emergent plants, you will also need to utilize an aquatic plant basket. Utilize aquatic planting media, to fill the base of the basket surrounding but not covering the tuber of the plant. Then cover the media with pea gravel to weight the basket and protect the roots from fish who like to nibble on roots. Emergent plants are typically less hardy, so they should not be added to the pond until water temperatures are consistently warm again. 

Marginal Aquatic Plants

Marginal aquatic plants can also be added to a pond by planting like emergent aquatic plants. However, when adding these plants to the pond, place so the top of the basket is a few inches below the surface of the water. Once the plant grows taller, you can lower to a deeper level of the pond at about two feet deep.
Now that you know more about varieties of plants and the maintenance required, you should be better able to choose the best plants for you and how to care for them. For more information about pond plant types, read about them here.