Are you fond of gardening? Do you like to add up a bit of rainforest to your house? Love to give a lively woodland touch to your backyard or the front of your home? But, what if your plants die rapidly? And you found out that the reason is quickly saturating soil or standing water all the way.
You cannot leave your love for plants just because of a concentrated piece of land in your backyard. Right? We have got you a solution. Wetland plants! Yes. Shift from native plants and adorn your home garden with beautiful wetland plants and flowery swamp plants.
Even if you do not have swampy soil, you can create a wetland in your backyard and grow beautiful wetland plants in it. The question that will immediately pop into your mind will be; what are wetland plants? How can they survive in such soil? How do they differ from the native plants?
Well, this article will give all of your answers, and along with that, we will also provide you extensive detail of all the best options among swamp plants that you can grow in your garden. The marshland plants can be added up to your garden fountain to enhance the beautiful look.
Firstly, let us talk about the wetland plants; the plant species that have undergone particular adaptations to survive excess of standing water and saturated soil and can withstand anaerobic conditions in the root zone are called the wetland plants.
Other than the swamp plants and marshland plants, these plants have many different names, such as aquatic plants or hydrophytes.
The wetland plants are the opposite of the native plants; the condition that might cause the native plants to die is favorable for the wetland plants. Furthermore, native plants can survive only in aerobic conditions.
In contrast, over wetting and anaerobic conditions because of excess water in the root zone can result in several hazards for the native plants’ growth, including wilting, root rot, and many more that eventually cause them to die. However, wetland plants are entirely different. They cherish excess water, and anaerobic conditions cannot do any harm to their survival.
Therefore, in your backyard, the saturated soil is a perfect place to grow them and enhance your house’s aesthetics. Wetland plants are further categorized under three different sections: emergent plants, floating plants, and submerged plants.
These plants are all wetland plants that slightly differ from each other in specific characteristics, which are explained as follows:
Emergent plants: The Marshland plants that have their roots underneath the water surface but the stem are extending above is called the emergent plants.
For example, Rushes
A wetland plant that is characterized by its hollow nude leaves that look like stems. These plants can restore the natural ecosystem in your backyard by attracting a number of birds. They can beautify your home garden and can also be used in pots placed in sideways.
Rushes have beautiful, striking colors, textures, and forms that make them popular for ornamental purposes. The only thing they demand is a constant water supply. When planted in the right container, they are extremely low maintenance plants that can add life to your garden and enhance your home’s aesthetics by merely being there.
Floating plants: The plants that have stems and leaves floating on the water’s surface while the roots are under the soil are called floating wetland plants.
Example: fragrant white water lily
The beautiful white and pink flowers, along with the flat and round leaves that float on the water’s surface, the fragrant white water lily is an absolutely gorgeous flowery wetland plant to admire.
These plants are a perfect choice to be grown in small ponds present in the backyard of your house or to be planted in your garden fountain. The vibe they give off is exceptional; also, they provide a beautiful sight for the viewers.
If you want to grow these downright dreamy water lilies in your ponds, make sure you do not have a lot of fishes in the pond and make sure more than half of the pond is covered by lily pads as these plants love to grow in shady areas.
Moreover, make sure you don’t over feed the plant with an excess of fertilizers to damage the plant’s health.
Submerged plants: The wetland plants that grow entirely under the surface of the water are either rooted or not.
Examples, River weeds
River weeds are the flower producing wetland plants that are similar in appearance to the algae and grow in shallow streams. The flowers they grow neither have neither sepals nor petals.
The unattached submerged wetland plants that grow entirely under the surface of the water are called as coontails or, more commonly as horn worts.
Importance of wetland plants
If grown inside your pool, the wetland plants prevent algal growth in it by taking up all the nutrients from pool water.
- Wetland plantsplay a crucial role in maintaining the ecosystem in which they grow. They serve as a food source for many organisms transferring energy in the system.
- Wetland plantsserve as a perfect habitat for several microorganisms and attract a number of birds. Moreover, when grown in pools and ponds, wetland plants make a comfortable natural habitat for fishes.
- Swamp plantstake up all the necessary nutrients from the water, therefore improving water quality and decreasing algal growth in it.
- In addition to all of the above benefits, wetland plantsare extensively used for ornamental purposes giving a dreamy, magical look to your home garden and adding value to your property.
Selection of plants for your wetland
Wetland plants need to be selected very carefully. Keeping the below-mentioned points in mind, you can choose the most suitable wetland plants for your home garden:
- The extent of soil saturation should be kept in mind while selecting a wetland plant.
- Availability of water and sun are significant concerns while choosing wetland plants; make sure you select the plants according to the available resources.
- Make sure the climate is suitable, and the soil pH is according to the plant’s requirements.
- Lastly, make sure you select the wetland plants that do not cause excess crowding in your wetland.
If you choose the plants wisely, they serve you with a beautiful sight with the least maintenance requirements.
Top 5 wetland plants to be selected for your wetland
Pickerelweed – a center of attention for a number of butterflies- is an absolutely gorgeous marshland plant that can grow in various shallow wetlands, predominantly found in the ponds and river margins. Pickerelweeds grown in the home gardens, and together with the water lilies, they give an aesthetic sight to view.
The beautiful, striking colors of these marsh plants provide a magical effect on the environment. Moreover, the plant produces gorgeous purple-blue flowers that have a spike shape. The pickerelweed has seeds that are used as a food source by ducks.
These plants, when planted according to their needs, are very easy to maintain. Just make sure the plant is grown in appropriate containers with the required water and enough sunlight.
Wetland plants with extremely attractive foliage, like a feather in shape, are called parrot feather plants. The beautiful green color of their foliage and the texture of these aquatic plants make them a perfect choice to add to your home garden.
You can grow them in your ponds, but you need to keep a check on them as they grow rapidly, and if not maintained, they quickly fill up their place, overwhelming and overcrowding other plants. If you select to plant them in your ponds, make sure you keep them under control as they are incredibly invasive and, if neglected, can be extremely difficult to manage.
It is better to grow these plants in a container or some other restricted water feature.
This beautiful little species is perfect for growing on the swampy land near your pond in the garden. Creeping jenny plant growing in between the rocks at the side of an outdoor pond is an eye-catching sight for the viewer.
These plants flower in summers and the beautiful cup-shaped flowers serve as a bonus to the aesthetic beauty of your pond. These wetland plants have widespread importance as herbal treatment of wounds.
Jenny plants are also invasive, so their care plan requires regular maintenance to prevent these plants’ overgrowth.
An eye-catching wetland plant with various colors, water lotus has extraordinary flowers that grow as big as a foot. These plants have beautiful flowers that look gorgeous when grown in a pond. Here again, the plants can grow instantly; therefore, to grow these plants, you need to keep a check on them, and it is better to restrict them in a suitable container.
These plants require a lot of sunshine for proper growth and enough fertilizers to make up their nutrient requirements. Due to its aggressive invasive nature, these exotic wetland plants are considered to be a lot problematic.
An attractive wetland plant with beautiful blue and pink flowers arranged in a dense mat of foliage, water-forget-me-not is an excellent choice to grow in moving water. Just stick the stem cuttings between the rocks, placed at the margins of a pond, or near a waterfall in your garden fountains. And these plants are all set to fantasize about the environment with their magic.
If you want to plant water-forget-me-not in your home garden, make sure you protect the plant from pest attack as they are prone to powdery mildews and other diseases caused by pests. Also, cut down the plant regularly to prevent its overgrowth and invasiveness.
Some other flowery swamp plants to add to your home garden
Featured for its striking pale purple shaded flowers, water hyacinth is an excellent choice to be grown in your home garden. Like all other wetland plants, water hyacinth too, requires a restriction to its rapid growth and invasiveness.
If you are thinking of adding them to your wetland, you need to vigilantly keep an eye on them and regularly trim them to keep them in place.
A native to marshlands, marsh marigold is famous for its stunning yellow flowers that bloom from April to June. These plants require moist soil and enough supply of water for their proper growth and survival.
Marsh marigolds, when planted near a pond or some moist surfaces, require little to no attention or maintenance. Just make sure the soil does not dry off completely. These marshland plants lose all their leaves if they face drought conditions.
A durable, long-lasting, and easy to grow and maintain swamp plant, rose mallow has characteristic white or pink flowers that give a magical vibe to the environment in which they grow. The ornamental plant has enormous flowers and even bigger leaves with beautiful patterns.
These plants are incredibly hardy and can survive stress conditions. Care plan involves weekly irrigation and fertilization throughout their growing season. These wetland plants are generally disease resistant that does not require a lot of maintenance.
American lotus is a floating wetland plant that produces stunning yellow flowers on the top of stems. They are anchored under the water surface but can rise a few feet above the water’s surface. They usually grow well in quiet water and sluggish ponds.
These plants serve ornamental purposes and are used as a source of food for ducks and fishes.
Summing up all of my above talks, wetland plants are great alternatives to native plants for more saturated soil and provide several benefits, including water purification, air purification, comfortable fish habitat, a food source for many critters, and a lot more.
Furthermore, to adorn your houses with these beautiful and flowery swamp plants, you need to care for them properly. Although they do not require much attention as native plants, you still got to keep a check on their growth patterns and restrict their invasiveness.