It’s easy to add some water into the garden without going to great lengths of installing pumps and wiring etc.
1. Select a low large bowl at least 600mm across, preferably glazed. If your bowl is porous, it will need to be sealed with a waterproofing membrane (look out for a low toxicity membrane if adding fish). A large pot with the drainage holes plugged could also be used.
2. Select your aquatic plants. Using plants of varying heights creates a mini landscape, and a group of 3 is a good start. You may need to put rocks or pebbles in the top of the plant pots to prevent them floating.
3. Fill the water bowl to around 20cms from the rim. Add de chlorinator to the water if there are to be fish included!
4. Change the water once a month, replacing around a third of the bowls water with fresh water.
Ponds require a little bit of work to keep them looking their best. The ecosystem of a pond involves the interaction of many factors, including water, gases, minerals, sunshine, plants and animals. If this delicate balance is disrupted, algae will spread and the water quality will deteriorate rapidly. Healthy ponds need oxygen, which is provided by oxygenating aquatic plants that also absorb carbon dioxide. When selecting plants for your pond there are basically 3 types of aquatic plant that refer to how much water they actually like:
• Bog or marginal plants grow along the waters edge and can tolerate boggy soils and wet roots eg. Elephant’s ears (Alocasia sp) Cyperus
• Submerged plants mostly live completely underwater. They oxygenate the water, and by competing with algae for nutrients they help to keep the pond water healthy and clear. They also provide sheltered areas for fish. eg water lilies (submerged roots and floating foliage).
• Floating plants are water purifiers that absorb nutrients directly from the water. They float on the surface, and are a good foliage contrast and produce lovely floating flowers. They also provide shade and shelter for fish. Take care not to let floating plants completely cover the water surface and block out all light. Divide rampant plants regularly. eg. Bladderwort (Utricularia gibba ssp.Exoleta)
NB. Some water plants have become invasive, so choose responsibly and ask your local nursery.
• If using water lilies, pots should be at least 45cm deep and 1m wide.
• Empty a third of the water every 2-4 weeks and replace with de-chlorinated water.
• Use aquatic plant potting mix to ensure the water doesn't go cloudy.
Imperial Gardens - 18 Myoora Rd. Terry Hills