May Gardening Tips – Ornamental Pond Plants

    Published: 06-16-2009
    Views: 15,044
    Mitch Baker, Horticulturist with American Plant Garden Center, demonstrates May gardening tips for ornamental pond plants.

    Mitch Baker: Hi! I am Mitch Baker with American Plant and we are talking about great gardening tips for May. And right now, for those who have a small ornamental garden pond, we are going to talk about selecting pond plants. We have already cleaned the pond out yesterday, we mucked all of the debris and the fallen leaves that had collected over the winter. But we want to make sure we leave some of that debris in the pond, because in that muck, in that debris, we have all of the beneficial microorganisms that we are looking for to help keep the water balanced. And if you clean all of that out of the pond in the spring, it takes that much longer for the water to rebalance itself. So make sure you leave some of that debris in the pond to help keep the water balanced. Now, we have selection of plants here that we are going to ease into the water today. And again, we are talking about those same three design elements that we talked about when we were potting up annuals. We are going to have a vertical element, thats what the Dwarf Umbrella Palm will provide. We are going to have an intermediate element, thats what the Juncus, the contorted spiral rush will provide, and then something thats going to be right on the water surface, thats what the Parrot's Feather will do for us. So first, we will go ahead and place the upright umbrella palm in the water. And we just want to ease that in slowly, so we are not disturbing the soil. We want to allow the water to slowly absorb into the plant, forcing the air pockets out and just gently easing it in the water, until it settles on the shelf around the edge of the pond here. Now, these are marginal plants, that means you would find them growing on the margins of a stream or a pond or a waterway. So they are just slightly submerged in the water. So we have created this shelf within the pond here, a shallow shelf, the center part is deep. We just have the plants that sit on this shallow shelf. We have our strong vertical line, now we are going to introduce the corkscrew rush. Same thing, just ease it down into the water, and last, our Parrot's Feather or Myriophyllum, thats going to be spread out across the water's surface. Now, the great thing about these aquatic plants in containers, they can be moved about the pond. If you dont like the design element or if it's not the right focal point, these can easily be moved and adjusted so that you take advantage of their growth habit from different viewpoints. Now, these plants were selected because they tolerate lower levels of light. A pond like this only gets two to three hours of direct sun, so that eliminates things like water lilies, not enough sun for them in a pond like this. So next, we are going to talk about bringing your indoor plants outside for the summer.