Water Gardens

Where was the first place people socialized? (Hint, it was not Facebook!)

Water...the first recorded story of it is in the Bible.   Two folks were talking in a garden with streams running through. Aztecs had cities with water running through them.  Native Americans trails followed waterways, cities were built near oceans for folks to travel around the world to find other folks to talk with, I mean socialize with!

Today its a water feature in your backyard that friends and family gather around to feed fish and talk.  Ken's Cattails has helped 1,000's of people add moving water to their landscaping and we're waiting to help you discover how much fun can be with water in your garden.

Add water to your landscape...turn off your phone and really socialize with your friends and family.

The definition of a "garden" is a place that plants are cultivated.  Water gardens are a place where we cultivate and nurture plants and it's also a place where we can grow and attract wildlife like fish frogs dragonfly's and birds to our yards.

Water plants are quite simply plants that tolerate wet conditions (remember algae is also a plant).  Water gardens need to have plants for a balanced eco- system and you can never have too many of them in your landscaping.
When you come to Ken's Cattails you will discover 50 to 75 different water plants, some will be floating on top, some will be just below the surface in pots and others will be deep under water. Also, the plants will be considered "hardy" or "tropical" plants.

At Ken's Cattails, our pond surfaces tend to be covered with 50 to 70% plant cover. Why is this? Plants will help shade the pond, reducing sunlight levels and algae growth. Coverage will also help protect the fish from predators (you know, that something that wants to eat 'em).
Hardy or tropical?

Do you need both Annuals and Perennials?

Yes!  You should have both as they both bring something different to each and every pond.  OFr example, you can have 
plain looking plants that are considered "hardy" and cool looking plants that are considered "tropical".

When digging and shaping your pond you can shape the shelves at different depths to accommodate different plants (if not you should have attended one of our classes).

Lets start at the surface.

Floating plants like hyacinths should be added as they are quick growers and bloom a nice blue flower (this bloom will only last one day and its the day you are out of town). 

Next comes our plant shelf where we place our bog plants.  These plants only require only 2 to 4 inches of water above the top of container.  There are lots of plants to choose for this area, one of our favorites here at Ken's Cattails is a combo pot with several plants planted together, almost like buying a hanging basket!

Next our bottom two feet...this is where we place our water lilies. 

*If you have large koi (they could knock over pots and destroy a few) incorporate a barrier or even consider wrapping you pots and plants with netting. 

Plants growing in water will sometimes give you the same challenges as growing plants on the patio with the one exception, you won't ask yourself, "Did I over water that plant?".

Soil used in our water plants should be heavy clay in composition so the plant will be stable and the soil will not float out of the pot.

Container size should suit the plant the larger the plant the larger the pot.

Do you even need a pot or are you able to just plug the plant between some rocks?  We have seen plants in ponds jammed between rocks, in fact we have irises at the store like that and we'll need a backhoe or forklift to get them out because the roots have captured the rocks and are holding onto them for ransom!.

Feed Me!!!  that sounds like a saying from a movie, but it's true, water plants need fed, some more than others.

ilies should be fed at least once a month during the blooming season - feed a total of only twice a month.

Bog plants feed about once every four to six weeks during the growing season.

If your floating plants look a little yellow, mix a bucket of liquid plant food and pull the plants out of the pond.  Place them in a bucket of dissolved fertilizer for several hours and rinse off the roots with clean water and return them to the pond.  Dump the bucket of water and fertilizer around your annuals in your flower bed.


If you have bugs on the leaves simply spray a hard jet spray of water from the hose or simply submerge the plant totally under water to allow the bugs to float off.  You can  also use a fine skimmer net to remove them or see if the fish will gobble them up!

Worst case, you may remove the plant from the pond, treat the plant for bugs, spray them off before replacing back in pond.  This would be my absolute last resort and if the bugs are really this bad, we recommend removing the affected plan and destroying it.