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Container Water Gardens

Most aquatic plants grow in full sun so choose a place in the garden where your container water garden will get at least 5 to 6 hours. Itís also nice to have a water garden as a focal point in the garden as well. Locating the container water garden near a water source will allow you to top it off as needed. Water tends to evaporate quickly in the hot sun and the water level should be kept at a constant level. If you use chlorinated water from the tap, let it sit for 24 hours so the chlorine dissipates. Rainwater can be used right away.

Any type of container will do as long as itís waterproof and holds at least 4 to 5 gallons of water. Unless you live in a warm location where your aquatic garden can be kept outside all year long, itís best to grow your aquatic plants in their own pots and place them into the larger "pond" container.

Potting up an aquatic plant is similar to any other kind with two exceptions. Avoid potting soil with vermiculite, which will float to the water surface and top off the potting mix off with a layer of sand to keep it from washing away. Place the pots into the larger container adjusting the heights using bricks to raise the plant to the correct water level.

What Plants Should I Use in My Container Water Garden?

Provided your container is large enough, a combination of submerged, emergent, and floating plants is the best plan for a colorful container water garden. Submerged plants like Anacharis (Egeria densa) serve a functional rather than aesthetic purpose and are used to oxygenate water. Plant them in at least 12 inches of water.

Emergent plants include the pretty blue flag iris, yellow flag iris, dwarf papyrus, and arrowheads (Sagittaria spp.), which have arrowhead-shaped leaves and white or blue flowers, are typically 12 to 24 inches in height and have attractive flowers or interesting foliage. Water lilies and lotus are known as floating plants whose leaves and flowers float on the water surface but whose roots are anchored on the bottom. Another pretty floating aquatic or water plant is water lettuce (Pistia stratiotes), which has bluish-green lettuce-like leaves with a velvety texture.

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Container water garden