My Twelve Favourite Marginal Plants And Why!
I have been collecting Pond plants from all corners of the world for a long time now. It’s has always been my passion to seek out new plants in the hope they will become pond worthy, and make good propagation. It has also been my aim to sell pond plants that are exclusive to Lilies Water Gardens. The list I have compiled below, consists of very familiar species and cultivars of Marginal Pond Plants and also some very rare exclusive plants that most people will not have heard of.
I got this plants from the USA. Also known as (Water Willow), Justicea Americana is a true marginal plants that grows in water at the edge of natural lakes ponds and slow moving streams and rivers. Justicea is quite slow growing so not invasive. It has attractive, narrow-like, willow leaves and puts on a display of pink/white orchid looking flowers throughout the summer. A favourite of mine not just for its flowers but also for the amount of Bees the flowers attract. Height 30-45 cm, Flowering time June-August, Water Depth 10-20cm above the crown.
This architectural marginal plant also came from the USA. Often named (Dwarf Water Bamboo), Dulichium thankfully, is not invasive in any way so not to be confused with some of our invasive garden Bamboos. This wonderful marginal pond plant puts on a stunning display of bright green and cream variegated leaves all summer long. Height 60cm, Water Depth 15-30cm over the crown.
All ponds and water gardens should house some rushes or aquatic grasses and this plant is my favourite out of all the Cotton Grasses. Broad Leafed Cotton Grass will bring your pond to life with its mass of drooping, fluffy white cotton seed heads throughout the summer. This plant is naturally stunning! Height 75cm, flowering time May-July, Water Depth 0-6cm over the crown.
This is without doubt my favourite of all the different water plantains. With it’s narrow, bright green leaves followed by airy-panicles of pink/white flowers throughout the summer it always looks pretty but really natural and as a bonus, a favourite for attracting Damselflies. Height 40cm, Flowering Time June-August, Water Depth 0-15 cm.
Every type of pond and water garden should house at least one Marsh Marigold. The native species is my favourite as it is the first of all the pond plants, to flower in the spring. Mature clumps will put on a display of hundreds of waxy, shiny butter-cup like, bright yellow flowers which is just what we all need to get spring started after a cold UK winter. Height 30-40cm, Flowering Time March-April, Water Depth 0-6cm.
Common name (Brooklime), this is another marginal plant that looks great everywhere, and therefore, a top favourite plant of mine that can be used in all ponds, streams, lakes, edge of waterfalls and in fact anywhere where there is fresh water or even, just damp soil. This versatile plant will creep to where it is happiest. With it’s lovely oval, glossy green leaves and very natural looking blue flowers, this plant is a truly stunning and is an excellent all round creeper that gives very good ground cover. Height 10cm, Flowering time May-July, Water Depth 0-4cm over the soil/crown.
Also known as (Pickerel Weed), this plant looks best planted in groups. Pontaderia Lanceolata grows up to 120 cm in height so is therefore not suitable for very small ponds. This species of Pickerel weed is also a favourite of mine as it produces large Lanceolate shaped leaves, and very showy,deep blue flowers making it, a very showy Marginal plant for larger ponds and lakes. But, it gets even better! This tall pond plant will also attract Dragonflies and Damselflies to your pond. Height 120cm, Flowering Time July-September, Water Depth 15-30cm over the crown.
Slow growing but well worth the wait, this plant also known as (Golden Club), needs a couple of seasons to establish. Orontium produces very unusual but very attractive narrow, yellow and white flower heads and always looks at it’s best when planted in groups. Height 45cm, Flowering Time April-May, Water Depth 10-15cm.
Another one from the USA. Outside of my collection of Louisiana Iris, this is my favourite of all the Water Iris I grow. This particular pond Iris is quite unusual in flower colour with blue, yellow and white tones, it produces a vast amount of blooms. It needs to be seen to be appreciated as it is simply stunning. Height 60cm, Flowering Time May-June, Water Depth 0-10cm.
Commonly recognized by the old folklore name (Water-Forget-Me-Not), this is yet another fantastic pond plant with its large abundance of bright blue flowers, it looks great planted and mixed up with Myasotis Palustris Alba and Ranunculus Flammula. This blue, white and yellow pond planting scheme appeared in most of my RHS show gardens back in the days. Height 10-35 cm, Flowering Time June-July, Water Depth 0-10 cm.
Small and subtle this plant is often very important in achieving the right look when creating a natural looking pond. Also known as (Lesser Water Plantain), this plant should never be over-looked. A very sweet, low growing, creeping marginal plant that produces small Lanceolate leaves that sometimes float and very naturally attractive small, pale pinkish flowers. This plant is an excellent choice for planting into shallow water margins and as an added bonus, the leaves of this plant give off a pleasant herbal scent when brushed. One of my top favourite native marginal plants, Baldelia is suitable for all ponds and water gardens. Height 15cm, Flowering Time June-August, Water Depth 0-5cm.
Another native choice of mine and also another wildlife favourite of mine too, Potentilla also known as (Marsh Cinquefoil), has lovely, strawberry shaped leaves on low over hanging stems that produce dark, wine red flowers that are very attractive to bees and will flower all summer long. This marginal plant likes very shallow water. Height 20-40cm, Flowering Time June-July, Water Depth 0-2cm
Please visit my website www.lilieswatergardens.co.uk to see my full range of pond plants and water garden plants available to buy online or from my retail nursery in surrey throughout the spring and summer.