Wednesday, June 3, 2015

Backyard Nature Wednesday: Pond plants

My little goldfish pond is full of life and it isn't only the fish. There are frogs, mainly Southern Leopard frogs, including lots and lots of tadpoles. Above and around the pond, dragonflies dart and dip. And in the pond, several plants live quite happily, feeding on and converting the fish waste and other detritus. The plants help to clean the water, which also keeps the fish happy.


The white water lily is a perennial plant that often forms dense colonies. The round, slightly heart-shaped leaves are bright green and 6 to 12 inches in diameter. They float on the water's surface, providing shade and hiding places for the fish, something which I'm sure they appreciate on the hottest days of summer. After all, these are cold water fish.

The flowers of the water lily arise on stalks that are separate from leaf stalks. They are brilliant white with yellow centers. The flowers float or stick above the water. They open in the morning and close in the late afternoon. The flowers are quite fragrant. They are the backbone of my pond vegetation.  

I've also added pickerelweed to my pond garden. It, too, is a perennial plant. It dies back in winter and returns in the spring. The plants can grow up to 3 1/2 feet tall. The leaves are shiny green and slightly heart-shaped, up to 7 inches long. The leaves are singly attached to a long petiole which grows in a rosette from the roots. Each stem can produce a terminal flower spike that is 3 to 4 inches long. The tubular-shaped flowers on the spike are violet in color. Each flower lasts for one day. Pickerelweed reproduces from both seeds and rhizomes.

  
These two useful and pretty plants help to make my pond a very attractive part of my backyard. They also provide a habitat for some of my favorite garden critters. 

4 comments:

  1. How beautiful! I wish I could have a garden and a pond...Ah, maybe someday...:-)

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    1. A garden is a lot of work and it's never "done," but for those who enjoy Nature, it is infinitely rewarding. I hope you'll have one someday.

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  2. Nice and beautiful garden

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