• You are viewing the forum as a Guest, please login (you can use your Facebook, Twitter, Google or Microsoft account to login) or register using this link: Log in or Sign Up

Marginal ideas


14 Sep 2007
Lewes, East Sussex
As a head gardener, i am responsible for a large ornamental pond at work. It has sprung a serious leak and has had to be emptied.

Some £60,000 and 150 tons of silt later, i'm in the position to get several marginal beds put in the pond. These beds will be in the region of 5m long and 1.5m wide. They'll be filled with soil and planted with a variety of plants.

The marginal beds will be approx 3-6" below the water surface.

So for the planting. each bed will probably have just one species in it. iris pseudochrous, skunk cabbage, marsh marigold, pontederia cordata and arrowhead are a must.

But i need a bit of inspiration on what else to use. Don't forget, they will be planted in at least 3-6" of water and i'd like them to be as insect and "mini-beast" friendly as possible. Flowers would be good, flowers and nice foliage together would be fab.

You can check the progress of the pond here Preston Rock garden - Brighton, United Kingdom - Community | Facebook

Many thanks

Hi all,
skunk cabbage
Lysichiton americanus is now on the "Invasive Alien" list: <
Invasive non-native species / Royal Horticultural Society
American Skunk-cabbage, Lysichiton americanus - GB non-native species secretariat

If I could only add one extra plant I'd definitely have Ranunculus lingua (Greater Spearwort). After that probably a Bull-Rush (either Schoenoplectus lacustris or S. tabernaemontani). A big sedge will also be good, I like Carex riparia or C. pseudocyperus, Cyperus longus would be another option. Amphibious Bistort (Persicaria amphibia) is another good one. A common garden plant that does well in the wet is "Gardener's Garters" Phalaris arundinacea "Picta".

If you could mix the planting up it would be better for the wildlife. I'd definitely have a Forget-me-not, Myosotis scorpiodes, the leaves are a favourite egg laying site for newts.

cheers Darrel
Iris laevigata Variegata is a must for me - it has very neatly variegated broad leaves and then blue flowers. In the marsh marigolds you can get double yellow and white versions too which are rather nice and a little more unusual. Another one I like, is Zandeschia aetheopica - Arum lilies - these thrive in that amount of water and if the roots are well below any ice that forms then they will survive outside.

Avoid anything too invasive such as horsetail though it is a very distinctive plant.
Try Hygrophila Pinnatifida !! It grows great emerged and Id say would make a great addition with its small purple flowers
Try Hygrophila Pinnatifida !! It grows great emerged and Id say would make a great addition with its small purple flowers

But will it survive the winter? I doubt they want to be replanting every spring.