September 22, 2004

Today's Pond Q&A

In today's issue of 'Ponds Q&A' we'll be talking about what to do
with your pond plants as winter approaches.

So here's a recent question sent in by Heidi Nelson:

Q>

"With Ohio cold weather coming, is there any way to keep my water
lilies, water hyacinth, forget-me-nots and canna alive during the
winter? We have a small heater in our pond during the winter,
but this is our first year for plants and am not sure of how to
keep them alive, if possible. Should I bring them inside and
keep them in water somehow? Thank you."

A>

That's a great question Heidi, thanks for sending it in.

The answer is that it really depends on the plant you are trying
to overwinter.

To start, Water Hyacinths are the least hardy and although they
multiply like crazy and are seemingly unstoppable during warmer
summer months - they die off quickly as the cooler temperatures
start to roll in. Same with all floating plants including water
lettuce, duckweed, etc.

Some people try to bring them indoors for the winter, but to my
knowledge - none have ever suceeded. I'm sure if you are a
techo-horticulturist zen master, you might be able to pull it off
(with the right lighting and equipment), but for most of us, it's
best to just toss them and start with fresh ones in the spring.

For water lilies, canna, and other potted plants all you have to
do is cut them down to the root, or the top of the pot, and lower
the pots down to the lowest part of the pond, which should be at
least 18" or deeper to prevent freezing of the root or rhiozyme.

The reason it's important to cut the plant down is because otherwise,
the leafy plant part will wither and die anyway, and begin decaying
in the pond - adding to your organic load over the winter, and you
don't necessarily want that.

So that's it! Plain and simple.

Follow these simple steps, and your potted plants will thrive and
grow year after year!

******************************************

For now however, while we still have some warmer temperatures in
many parts of the country, some people's plants may still be in
their prime!

Here are some great pictures I just took today of my Lily's in
full bloom.

<< See if you can find the little critter hiding in the flower >>

https://www.macarthurwatergardens.com/Articles/LillyFlowers.shtml

Enjoy!

Brett Fogle
MacArthur Water Gardens
www.macarthurwatergardens.com

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Posted by bfogle at September 22, 2004 09:35 PM
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