Why Choose Native Plants?
The broad spectrum of pond visiting wildlife have been here long before we as humans started bringing different plants from overseas for visual appeal. Quite simply, numerous insects and amphibians have evolved to make best use of these plants for their lifecycles.
Pond plants generally fall into five main categories; oxygenators, marginals, deep water, floating and damp ground/bog plants. Each of these serve a vital purpose in the ecosystem of a pond, with variety being key to having a well-balanced pond. Oxygenators do exactly as they say, but also filter impurities, provide food and habitat. Many of the marginal plants (those that sit at the pond edges with wet roots, but dry foliage) are great for pollinators, and the deep-water plants such as lilies are fantastic at providing shade. Water lily pads also give platforms for dragonflies to lay their eggs under.
Naturally hardy, native pond plants will return from their rootstock each spring. The exception being the oxygenators and floating Water Soldiers, which overwinter at the bottom of the pond where the temperature remains a few degrees warmer.
March is upon us and the plants are all beginning to wake up again from their winter slumber. In some areas the frogs have already begun spawning! One of their favourite plants for this is Hornwort, a native oxygenator that requires no potting – just throw (gently!) straight into your pond and let it grow.
To boost the wildlife in your pond this year, consider adding a few native plants. The early season British native plants currently in stock at Wayside online and in store are:
Native Marginals (ground cover): Brooklime, Water Forget-Me-Not, Bog Pimpernel, St John's Wort.
Native Marginals (medium size): Chives, Cotton Grass, Soft Rush, Hard Rush, Lesser Spearwort, Marsh Marigold, Red Veined Sorrel, Water Avens, Bog Bean, Cuckoo Flower, Ragged Robin,
Native Marginals (taller varieties): Dutch Rush, Greater Spearwort, Purple Loosestrife, Water Mint, Yellow Flag Iris, Pendulous Sedge, Lesser Reedmace, Slender Tufted Sedge,
Native Water Lily: Alba (white).
As the weather warms up, more and more varieties will become available. If you would like notifying when a particular plant comes into stock, please just get in touch!