Marginal Plants or Shallow Water Plants

Attracting wildlife to your pond is one of the most important benefits of planting marginal plants.

A Marginal

Providing excellent cover around the pond, removing nitrates that could cause algae bloom, are just some of the benefits these plants provide.

The wildlife includes mayflies, dragonflies and damselflies all of which spend about 95% of their lives in water prior to becoming adults.

The nymphs, as they are referred to in their developing stages, use the stems of marginals to crawl out of the water and hatch into airborne adults.

Marginal Plants grow in 6 inches of water or less.

Marginals are perennials that can grow in shallow water anywhere from 2"-6" deep.

Planted mostly in pots for easy removal, the plants can also be moved around the pond at will.

In order to obtain a depth of 2" a 6" pot needs to placed in 8" of water.

The pot needs to be made for aquatic settings but the growing medium can be ordinary "garden loam".

One thing to keep in mind is to use only aquatic fertilizer that is fish and wildlife safe.

With minimum of preparation, your garden ponds setting can be enhanced immensely by the addition of these plants.

Tips:
  • When designing your pond, incorporate a larger shelf area to accommodate your marginals. These plants extend above the water surface (see illustration) and can be blown over if a strong wind prevails.

    To remedy this, use a wider pot to anchor the plants in place.

  • If the plant is set on the shelf and is still deeper in the water than what the plant requires, then raise the pot to get the required depth of that plant.

    To accomplish this, use a brick or flat rock placed under the pot.