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Choosing Plants for Pond Water Filtration

Choosing Plants for Pond Water Filtration

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Phyto-purification is a natural technique for filtering water using specific plants. In other words, it is a process of purifying aquatic ponds through the use of plants.

This method is also known as helophyte filter or constructed wetland. It involves using these plants to develop purifying bacteria in the water. These bacteria help purify the pond water by removing pollutants and other substances.

Such an operation is made possible thanks to the roots of helophyte plants. They promote the presence of nitrogen and phosphates in the water, which hinder the growth of algae.

As a result, there is generally better growth of purifying plants, which leads to clearer water. In this article, we will explore the plants known for filtering pond water.

The Water Plantain

Choosing Plants for Pond Water Filtration

The scientific name of the Water Plantain is Sparganium erectum. This herbaceous plant is also known as the branched bur-reed. It is typically found growing along banks or in deep waters.

The Water Plantain: a depolluting herbaceous plant known for growing on banks and in deep waters | Photo: Wikipedia

Recently, the Water Plantain has been classified in the Typhaceae family. Among its notable characteristics, it possesses recognized depolluting properties.

The Yellow Iris

Choosing Plants for Pond Water Filtration

This depolluting plant is known by several names: yellow iris, yellow flag, pale-yellow iris, etc. Its scientific name is Iris pseudacorus. It belongs to the order Asparagales.

The Yellow Iris is recognized by its green foliage and yellow-colored flowers | Photo: Wikipedia

The Yellow Iris is recognized by its green foliage and yellow-colored flowers. It is usually planted in September and its first leaves emerge from the ground in the following March. The Yellow Iris is highly valued for its strong depolluting capacity.

The Common Reed

Choosing Plants for Pond Water Filtration

The Common Reed is one of the most commonly used plants for phyto-purification. Its scientific name is Phragmites australis, and it is known by many other names such as reed, carrizo, phragmite, etc.

The Common Reed, one of the most commonly used plants for phyto-purification | Photo: Wikipedia

The Common Reed belongs to the Poaceae family, specifically the Arundinoideae subfamily. It is typically found near bodies of water, in ponds, or marshes.

The Sweet Flag

Choosing Plants for Pond Water Filtration

Like the other plants on this list, the sweet flag is also used for purifying ponds. Its scientific name is Acorus calamus, and it is a plant native to Asia. It is also known as sweet flag or fragrant rush.

The Sweet Flag is a plant native to Asia, known for its strong depolluting capacity | Photo: Wikipedia

It is recommended to plant it in spring, although it will not bloom until the following summer. The sweet flag is often considered for its decorative effects, but it also has a strong capacity to depollute ponds and lakes.

The Narrowleaf Cattail

Choosing Plants for Pond Water Filtration

The Narrowleaf Cattail, scientifically known as Typha angustifolia, has green leaves and distinct brown inflorescences. It is also known as lesser bulrush or small-reed, especially in Canada.

The Narrowleaf Cattail is primarily used for zinc removal | Photo: Wikipedia

This plant, belonging to the Typhaceae family, is primarily used for zinc removal, in addition to its anti-pollution properties.

The Hardstem Bulrush

Choosing Plants for Pond Water Filtration

The Hardstem Bulrush is known by many other names such as chair-maker’s rush, cooper’s rush, lake club-rush, or pond sedge. It belongs to the Cyperaceae family, with the scientific name Schoenoplectus lacustris.

The Hardstem Bulrush is often used in erosion control and phyto-purification | Photo: Wikipedia

It is commonly used in erosion control, particularly in protecting the edges of ponds. However, it is more effective in phyto-purification. The Hardstem Bulrush has a strong capacity for absorbing heavy metals and phenols.

The Mare’s-tail

Choosing Plants for Pond Water Filtration

The Mare’s-tail, also known as water horse-tail, is classified in the Plantaginaceae family with the scientific name Hippuris vulgaris. It can be found in Europe, Asia, and North America.

The Mare’s-tail or water horse-tail is used for pond and lake purification | Photo: Wikipedia

As an immersed and invasive plant, the Mare’s-tail is used for the purification of ponds. Among its notable characteristics, it produces an abundant amount of oxygen.

The Parrot’s Feather

Choosing Plants for Pond Water Filtration

The Parrot’s Feather, scientifically known as Myriophyllum aquaticum, belongs to the Haloragaceae family. It is also called Brazilian watermilfoil. Today, it can be found on all continents, although it originates from South America.

The Parrot’s Feather is an invasive plant appreciated for its oxygen production | Photo: Wikipedia

The Parrot’s Feather is used in phyto-purification just like other plants. While it produces a sufficient amount of oxygen, its rate of propagation should be monitored due to its highly invasive nature.

The Broadleaf Pondweed

Choosing Plants for Pond Water Filtration

The Broadleaf Pondweed, or Potamogeton natans, belongs to the Potamogetonaceae family. It is found in the northern hemisphere.

The Broadleaf Pondweed, a plant appreciated for its strong anti-pollution capacity | Photo: Wikipedia

This plant thrives in temperate environments. It is highly valued for its strong anti-pollution capacity.

The Canadian Waterweed

Choosing Plants for Pond Water Filtration

Native to North America, the Canadian Waterweed is also known as the water pest. It belongs to the Hydrocharitaceae family.

The Canadian Waterweed, a highly oxygenating plant native to North America | Photo: Wikipedia

The Canadian Waterweed is a highly oxygenating plant, which is why it is widely used in phyto-purification.

The Pickerelweed

Choosing Plants for Pond Water Filtration

The Pickerelweed, scientifically known as Pontederia cordata, is an aquatic plant commonly used for its anti-pollution properties.

The Pickerelweed is a plant commonly used for its anti-pollution properties | Photo: Wikipedia

When planted along the edge of ponds, it plays a purifying role. It can also be planted in deep waters.

The Marsh Marigold

Choosing Plants for Pond Water Filtration

The Marsh Marigold belongs to the Lythraceae family. Its scientific name is Lythrum salicaria.

The Marsh Marigold, a notable plant among those used in phyto-purification | Photo: Wikipedia

Its filtering quality ranks it at the forefront of plants used in phyto-purification.

The Water Mint

Choosing Plants for Pond Water Filtration

Water Mint, scientifically known as Mentha aquatica, is highly valued in phyto-purification. It possesses excellent filtering qualities.

Water Mint, a plant with excellent filtering qualities | Photo: Wikipedia

Therefore, it is not surprising that it is extensively used for natural pond purification.

The Horsetail

Choosing Plants for Pond Water Filtration

 

The Horsetail, also known as Winter Horsetail, Himalayan Horsetail, or Giant Horsetail, is scientifically called Equisetum hyemale.

The Horsetail is highly appreciated for purifying ponds and water bodies | Photo: Wikipedia

This aquatic plant has been successfully used for purifying ponds. It is highly effective in achieving purification.

Conclusion

In summary, we have a list of fifteen plants that are well suited for filtering pond water. Alongside planting and monitoring their propagation, it is important to regularly test the water. This will help maintain the balance of the pond and make corrections if necessary.

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- Mahatma Gandhi

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