Cool Weather Plants
Late summer and early fall are great times to work on your water garden feature. When you divide your Louisiana Iris in the fall, you insure springtime blooms. Louisiana Iris blooms come in many beautiful colors and add beauty and elegance to your pond in late spring or early summer. The green, swordlike foliage stays nice all summer long. Iris can be grown in baskets or containers in your pond, on the bank of your natural pond or streambed and is an amazing plant that takes up nutrients from your pond in early spring as well as throughout the summer months into fall, helping to aid in algae reduction.
It is a good time to divide your Sweet flag (Acorus calamus) as well. Sweet flag is an ornamental grass with lovely cream and green stripes throughout the foliage and is very easy to grow. It can be grown in containers in the pond with a few inches of water over the pot, on the banks of a natural pond or in the bog area of your water garden. Sweet flag helps with the uptake of nutrients for several months of the year and is considered an evergreen.
Establishing Water Hawthorne (Apongeton distachyos) in your water garden in the fall, will provide you with green plants and pretty, white blooms in the winter months and into spring.
Planting Marsh Marigold(Caltha palustris) in the fall and getting it established before the first frost will guarantee you that you will have green plants along with sunny-yellow springtime blooms in the spring when the water is still cold. Marsh Marigold is a delightful plant with mounding habitat, emerald green foliage and pretty, yellow flowers.
Bogbean (Menyanthes trifoliata) is another plant that will benefit you in the spring. Frilly white-pink buds and blooms adorn the stems in early spring, usually one of the very first to flower in the pond in the spring! Enjoy this interesting and unusual herbaceous plant in your water garden next year! Add Bogbean to your water garden this fall, and reap the benefits next spring!
All of these plants, once established, will begin the process of taking up nutrients in the pond during the cold spring months when it is still too cold for your hardy waterlilies to bloom and much too early to add Water Hyacinths and Water Lettuce or any annuals.
Adding barley extract will help prevent the occurrence of algae in the spring. Barley bales need warm temperatures to break down and address algae issues. It is better to take pro-active steps towards the prevention of algae. A way to do that is by having plants in your pond that are going to take up the algae causing nutrients.
You can add Water Hawthorne to your pond by planting a Water Hawthorne Bulb right along with your hardy waterlily, in the same pot. The Water Hawthorne will grow and bloom when it is too cold for the hardy waterlily and the waterlily will grow and bloom during the months that it is too warm for the Water Hawthorne. It is a wonderful, symbiotic relationship and gives you the most bang for your buck when it comes to fighting algae.