Planting shallow pond shelves

Planting your pond 1   2   3   4   5   6  

For planting shallow pond shelves - use marginal shelf pond plants:

  • For a guide to planting the shallow pond shelves we have taken into account the depth of the basket we send each plant in.
  • So we know how deep the crown of the plant at the top of the basket plant will be below water.
  • The plant label sent in the basket is the depth of water over the top of the basket. More relevant when you are kneeling beside the pond to place it in the water.
Symbol Shelf depth in cm Shelf depth in inches
<p>Suitable for waterlogged soil (wet mud)</p> wet mud wet mud
<p>Suitable for shelf depth 13-15cm(5-6”) or waterlogged mud </p> 13 -15 5 - 6
<p>Suitable for shelf depth 14-22cm (approx 6-9”)</p> 15 -22 6 - 9
<p>Suitable for shelf depth 23-44cm (approx 10-17”) below water surface</p> 23 - 44 10 - 17
<p>Suitable for shelf depth 45cm+ (approx 18”+) below water surface level</p> 45 + 18 +

Water depth is vital to marginal shelf pond plants:

  • Too deep and some varieties will not thrive
  • Too shallow and some varieties could be caught in frost/ice and not have enough protection to survive.
  • Some plants can cope with a wide variety of shelf depths.

If you have a shelf too deep for a particular plant species:

  • Replant into a taller basket so that the top of the basket (& crown of the plant) is at the correct depth
  • Raise the planted basket up by using blue engineering bricks.
  • Part fill a larger basket with gravel to stand the smaller basket in to lodge it with gravel surrounding it.

Planting on pond shelves is easier if you built your pond with the right depth shelves:

  • Build a shelf at 5-6"/13-15cm to hold plants showing <p>Suitable for shelf depth 13-15cm(5-6”) or waterlogged mud </p>
  • Another shelf at 6-9"/15-22cm to hold plants showing <p>Suitable for shelf depth 14-22cm (approx 6-9”)</p>
  • Possibly (if space) a shelf at 10-17"/23-44cm to hold plants showing <p>Suitable for shelf depth 23-44cm (approx 10-17”) below water surface</p>
  • And a base of 2'6"/75cm to hold plants showing <p>Suitable for shelf depth 45cm+ (approx 18”+) below water surface level</p>
  • Most shelf areas should be shelf <p>Suitable for shelf depth 13-15cm(5-6”) or waterlogged mud </p>  and shelf  <p>Suitable for shelf depth 14-22cm (approx 6-9”)</p>.
  • We recommend a minimum of 3 x 1 litre marginal aquatic baskets per metre length for planting pond shelves.
  • Plant more if the shelf is wider than 30cm(12") or if you want it to look full quickly.

Plants with their crowns at ground level but roots in wet mud: Wet mud <p>Suitable for waterlogged soil (wet mud)</p> :

  • Plants that grow in wet mud in a sloping beach area of a pond, in a muddy bog garden alongside or on a wet, muddy stream edge
  • These are the same plants that sit on planting pond shelf  <p>Suitable for shelf depth 13-15cm(5-6”) or waterlogged mud </p> 5-6" depth
  • They are plants that can survive with their planted crown exposed to frost or ice
  • Their roots can live in permanently wet soil.

Shallow Shelf Pond Plants that sit with their crowns at/near water level: Pond Planting Shelf  Suitable for shelf depth 13-15cm(5-6”) or waterlogged mud :

  • Plants that can be placed with their roots/baskets in water but with little or no water over their crown on a shallow 5-6" depth shelf.
  • Shelf pond plants can be divided into 2 types -
  • Horizontal spreaders across the water - rafting plants
  • Vertically up and out of the water - emergent plants
  • Your pond should contain a mix of both to create different wildlife habitats.
  • Container pond planting collections are normally planting shelf <p>Suitable for shelf depth 13-15cm(5-6”) or waterlogged mud </p>  plants as the plant support grid sits in position with approximately 2cm(1") of water over the top of an 11cm basket.
  • For a pond with no shelves in its construction - use floating planting islands that float the crown of the plants on/near the water surface using plants listed Suitable for shelf depth 13-15cm(5-6”) or waterlogged mud .

Plants that want more water over the top of the basket: Planting Shelf Suitable for shelf depth 14-22cm (approx 6-9”) :

  • Plants that are placed with up to 13cm(5") of water over the top of the basket. So on a 6-9"/15-22cm shelf

Plants for a deeper shelf still: Planting Pond Shelf Suitable for shelf depth 23-44cm (approx 10-17”) :

  • Robust plants that thrive on a deeper shelf still that places the crown of the plant in deeper water below a risk of ice at that depth.
  • There are not so many varieties for this depth.
  • The miniature and dwarf waterlilies can be placed onto a pond planting shelf or at the base of our patio container pond at planting shelf Suitable for shelf depth 14-22cm (approx 6-9”) or just into the shallow end of shelf Suitable for shelf depth 23-44cm (approx 10-17”) depth so at a maximum depth of 25cm/10"

For deeper pond areas see the page Deeper depth pond plants: Shelf <p>Suitable for shelf depth +45cm (approx +18