planting pond plants in pots - The Planted Tank Forum
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post #1 of 4 (permalink) Old 05-23-2012, 03:07 PM Thread Starter
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planting pond plants in pots

I have a water garden and last year got some hardy lilys from a friends co-worker. I wasnt sure what to do with them so I placed them in a container added some rocks and put them at the bottom of the pond for winter. Well spring rolls around and they are still alive. I was wondering what is the propper way to plant them. I have heard to line the planter with burlap and add some loam soil, place the bulb in that them top the loam soil off with a layer of pea gravel so the soil stays in the pot. Anyone have any other better ideas on how to accomplish healthy lilys in a pot. Right now i have some new growth, but the pads are mostly redish in color instead of their usual green. I believe this means they are not getting enough nutrients and want I would like to brighten them up!
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post #2 of 4 (permalink) Old 05-24-2012, 08:34 PM
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Every once in a while you have to divide the tubers just cut them with a knife and put them in a pot with just top soil and gravel on top you can put some fert tabs in the pot to help out--the red is usally on young leaves --i dont think you have an issue
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post #3 of 4 (permalink) Old 05-24-2012, 10:04 PM Thread Starter
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Okay so just plain old top-soil is fine? I went to two of the nurserys around me which have a pond emphasis and was told it needed to be Loam soil which i guess is a mixture of soil, sand, and peat or a expensive aquatic potting soil they sell. If regular top-soil works just fine I would rather do that because lord knows I have enough of that lying around!
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post #4 of 4 (permalink) Old 05-25-2012, 03:35 AM
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Soil has some very specific terminology, like the Latin names of fish and the botanical names of plants, and the equivalent of common names.

Sand, Silt and Clay are specific soil particle sizes. In the right blend the mix is called Loam, or some variation such as sandy loam or clay loam. None of these have anything to do with the organic matter (peat moss or anything else) in the soil.

Loam is a common name used to mean nice soil, but usually the person using this term has not idea if the soil is technically loam according to soil scientists.

For gardening in a pond, and planting pond plants in containers try your garden soil. Do not add too much compost. Perhaps 90% soil, and just 10% compost. The compost can be peat moss. If you are using home made compost make sure it is well composted to the point that you cannot tell what it used to be.

A quickie test of garden soil to see if it is suitable:
Put some soil and water in a jar with a tight lid and shake it really well.
If all the soil settles out in just a couple of hours that is good.
If the water is reasonably clean and pretty much clear in those couple of hours that is good.
If the water is cloudy that is not very good, but give it one more chance. If the cloudiness has not settled by the next day do not use this soil. It has too many very fine particles and will cloud the pond water.
If the water is clear but has turned brown, red or yellow (or almost any variation) then there is organic matter in the soil that is releasing tannins. This will probably not be a problem with a small amount of soil in a large pond, but might be a problem if your pond is a very small one. A bit of a tint is fine. You might also see stuff floating in the jar, especially when you first shake it up. Organic matter will usually float until it soaks up enough water to sink. If there is a lot, or it is large pieces it can be removed pretty easily.
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