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Water Garden Floating Plants 

How to make a floating plants container .. 

What Are Floating Plants: Types Of Free Floating Water Plants

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Floating plants are ideal for newly installed ponds, because they absorb CO2 directly from the air. They are growing quickly and make few demands on water quality. Their value is determined particularly by their enormous growing capacity, even under conditions in which oxygen producing plants fail. The floating plant group is not very large, certainly not if we consider just the native hardy species. However, even though there are few of them regarding their species, they are forming a very useful and in some cases essential group of water plants. To realise a natural equilibrium and clear water the plants can not be dispensed with.

Their floating power these little plants owe to their leaves that are filled with air, whereas the little roots that are hanging in the water absorb nutrients. In contradistinction to the group of oxygen plants which are growing under water, floating plants, for their growth, do not have to rely on CO2present in the water.


What floating plants?


Usable hardy floating plants include, among other things frog bit (Hydrocharis Morsus-ranae), duckweed (Lemna valdiviana), pointed weed (Lemna trisulca) and azolla floating fern or small duckweed fern (Azolla Caroliniana). Non hardy species are, for example, mustard plant or water lettuce (Pistia stratiotes) and floating fern (Salvinia natans). You can use the well during the months of May up to and including September. These subtropical floating plants can hibernate in an aquarium, if necessary. Tropical floating plants, such as water chestnut and water hyacinth may serve as ornamental plants, however, in our climate they have no biological use.

Introducing floating plants


If the outside temperature has risen above 15°C is, the plants are strong enough to be put in a pond. At lower temperatures you may let them hibernate in a frost-free area. Floating plants are pre-eminenty suitable then to be into newly installed ponds.


You can purchase these useful plants in garden centres and pet and pond specialist shops.

What Species to Choose and Why?

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There are a variety of species to choose from, but the following are some of the best, and includes water lilies and lotus though they are not free floating, but include floating parts. The text will list some of the benefits of each species.


  • Western water lily, Cow-lily or Spatterdock (Nuphar polysepalum) = large leaves (up to 18” long) cover a lot of surface area, have edible seeds and roots, and beautiful yellow flowers. They provide cover for fish, amphibians and many invertebrate species.

  • Fragrant water lily (Nymphaea odorata) = grows abundantly, covers a lot of surface area, flowers are beautiful and fragrant and cultivated varieties come in many colors, native of eastern USA. WARNING! This species is invasive on the west coast, and is even on the noxious weeds list in WA state.

  • American lotus (Nelumbo lutea) = leaves can be up to 3 feet across, leaves can be used in cooking, large edible seeds, amazing wildlife food and habitat, large banana sized edible tubers, spectacular and mild scented flowers, grows in warmer parts of the USA.

  • Fanwort (Cabomba caroliniana) = like a miniature water lily with floating leaves, but much of the foliage of this floating pond plant is underwater and very feathery and dense, provides habitat for many small insects and baby fish.

  • Azolla or water ferns (Azolla sp.) = like miniature floating ferns, usually less than inch across, great food for ducks, can be skimmed off pond and fed to chickens. Be mindful that this plant can be invasive in some areas.

  • Duckweed (Spirodela sp.) = tiny plants that look like single leaves with rootlets below, food for ducks, can be skimmed and fed to chickens, forms green mat. This plant can be invasive in some areas.

Closing Thoughts


Whether you have a tiny backyard pond or a large farm pond, floating pond plants can bring many benefits to your water body. They will add aesthetic value, improve wildlife habitat and can even provide food for you and your family.

Planting Ideas :

1- Floating Plant Islands :


These floating planting baskets can be used to create a marsh or add an impressive island to your pond. The baskets, which are equipped with styrofoam floating rings, can be linked together and can be placed in any random place on the water surface. This will produce a fascinating effect, even in those places where the pond is too deep to plant marsh plants on the bottom.

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- Illuminated Floating Plant Basket


Enjoy your pond plants after dark as they are lit with a warm glow. The light also shines below the water illuminating your fish.

The basket has a diameter of 35cm. It is supplied with 5m of cable and a plugin transformer. The light operates at 12v 2.2w.

Guaranteed for 2 years.

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2- Pond Planter Socks


An alternative to planting baskets with less soil spillages and fish invasion. The rot proof sock is filled with soil and small crosses are cut for the plants. The sock contains the roots and creates a natural look to the pond.

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-Pond planter sock (18 litres)


These planting bags are made from a fine mesh flexible material. They are ideal for ponds with uneven shelves, where baskets would be unstable, or for shallow shelves where normal planting baskets would stick out of the water.   Suitable for all aquatic plants but particularly good for shallow creeping plants to create cover at the edges of the pond so wildlife can get in and out of the pond easily and safely. Can be cut to accommodate the required number of plants.


Allow 3 to 5 plants per sock depending on ultimate size of the plant and density required or how quickly you want it to look established.


90cm long, 20cm wide 10cm deep

Holds 18 litres of soil

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  • Pond Pockets allow you to hang attractive aquatic plants along the side of your pond

  • Comes with two ground anchors and a tab 61cm long to allow depth adjustment

  • Simply plant up, fix to appropriate depth and cover fixing tab

  • Made from rot proof polypropylene netting

  • Comes as a pack of 5

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-Give a natural planting effect for covering edges and curves.

-Ideal for preformed ponds.

The pond plant sock has a very finely woven structure which is very strong. It prevents roots from growing through and soil being washed away.

The pond plant sock is suitable for all kinds of pond plants and owing to the flexibility of the material it can be placed on almost any base.

3- Over Growing Mat


A simple but ingenious idea! Simply peg or secure the blanket to the pond edge. Fill the pockets with soil and plant!

Ideal for ponds without suitable planting shelves or unwanted exposed liner.

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There is no other material, either natural or man made, with all of the characteristics that are unique to raw cork: light weight, rot resistant, non-toxic, good compression and expansion, fire resistant, impermeable, soft, and buoyant. Besides these remarkable qualities, cork bark is also a sustainable, renewable, and environmentally friendly natural resource. Cork bark is “stripped” off the cork oak trees at appropriate intervals without damage to the trees and allows new bark to grow in its place so there is no harm to nature, no trees are cut or destroyed, no disturbance of flora and fauna … and yet a whole industry flourishes from this very unique raw material.


Cork can be purchased by the tubes or as a floating island with 1 3" pot or up to 5-3" pots. We drill them and plant them up for you. Also great for reptiles and terrariums.

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Videos : 

Gardening Tips: Best Plants for a Water Garden

Aquarium Plant Discussion About Floating Plants Frogbit, Salvinia Natans and Dwarf Water Lettuce

Floating Island Gardens

Aquatic Cannas in Water garden Stream, grow pond plants

Plants for Water Gardens

What NOT to do to your floating plants!

Plants for Ponds

How do you make a floating planter pot?

How to Make Floating Garden

floating plant basket velda

Make a Floating Pond Planter

How to Build a Floating Plant Island

Floating Plants for Beginners

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