Follow up question(S)?

Arlington, TX

I need some floating plants, what are the best that are legal everywhere? I tried frogbit a few years ago and it just faded away. I really don't want to plant them so I know that limits my options.

Possibilities: frogbit again, water fern, mosaic plant or?

I always put some feeder gold fish in and will do that again. I was also thinking of adding some common guppies for better mosquito control. I am not sure I want actual mosquito fish because I keep reading how they tend to over multiply.

Any ideas are appreciated.

Ocoee (W. Orlando), FL(Zone 9b)

I use guppies for mosquito control, as well as dalmation mollies. They work wonders (and breed like crazy so I don't get upset if I lose some to a frost, etc) They also look great flitting in and out of the water lily leaves.
I know many people use water lettuce, but I don't care for it. It sheds way too much (it has a fuzzy leaf) and makes the water messy. Water hyacynth (check for legality in your area) , small water lilies, snowflake aka fringe plant (looks like a small water lily but flowers with quarter sized white fringe water lily blossoms, also comes in yellow) are my favorites.
I've been using "Tina" tropical water lilies because they are very hardy, spread quickly should koi nibble them, and reproduce by tubers, seeds, and new plantlets coming off the leaves.

Arlington, TX

I'm in zone 8 so the guppies won't over winter here. I really want floating plants that don't need to be planted. My pond is tiny and I have a large miniature water lily (oxymoron) but it won't cover enough of the surface. Water hyacinth is illegal. Do you have to plant fringe in a pot or can they float?

Columbus, OH

An easy option is to use impatiens in floating planters. They really don't even need soil.

Duckweed work well for me too.

Clermont, FL(Zone 9a)

I float 4 floating pots of sweet flag. So far koi haven't eaten them and they have been in ponds for quite a while. Their leaves are above water level most of the time.

This is what I've tried and fish ate them---parrot feather a floater on top, pickerel weed in pot with rocks, don't eat umbrella palm in pots in rocks, water hyacinth (they loved playing in them while they ate them up). Their black roots clogged up my pump which is down inside of skimmer.
Brought home a couple of pieces from pet shop of submersible anacharis which they ate in about 10 minutes. 4 water lilies lasted overnight and they were shredded. Also they shred up small elephant ears quickly. Water lettuce was desert.

Unless plants are potted and way above water surface my vegetarians eat them. Not much help am I. These are all koi and maybe smaller fish would leave plants alone hopefully. I have given up on ever having water lilies unless they are in separate tubs.

Good luck

Athens, PA

My koi have left the hardy waterlilies alone, however the tropical waterlily they ate all the way down to nothing.

Ocoee (W. Orlando), FL(Zone 9b)

I never plant a thing in a pot or soil. I have in the past, because I feel I "should" but then realized everything I threw in a bucket, grew anyway, just as well. Water Iris, purple stemmed taro, anacharis, Tina water lily, Snowflake, larger lilies, umbrella palm, arrow head, pickerel, water hyacinth, you name it....I just throw it in, it grows...

Arlington, TX

My pond is small and the bottom is bare. I do think I grew the yellow floating hearts without planting them many years ago.

(Zone 9a)

Merry Mary, are you saying you just toss the plants into the pond and they eventually right themselves and grow? That would be a godsend for me because the soil around here is salty silt and I usually have to import decent soil to plant the lilies, etc.

Ocoee (W. Orlando), FL(Zone 9b)

I do (not sure I should admit that on a gardening forum!) but have not planted my lotus, anacharis, lilies, water iris, parrots feather, and newly purchased mosais plant. Sure, my INTENTION always is to do it, but they take off before I ever get to it, so why upset the apple cart? :)

Arlington, TX

Mary does your pond have an earthen bottom or gravel? Mine is bare so I don't know how that would work for plants that need the roots, well, rooted in something?

Ocoee (W. Orlando), FL(Zone 9b)

Mine is a black liner.... things that would normally need "rooting" I sort of tuck away in an edge of something, like pinned under a rock to keep it from floating (like the water lilies or lotus). The floating plants, I just let float, and fend for themselves.... I only move them if the koi start to eat them.

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