We have previously talked about the usefulness of lake plantings. Plants, whether they are on islands or on shores, prevent erosion, filter stormwater run-off, and contribute to healthy ecosystems. Sites will frequently have specific rules about having plants, too. You will probably want to pick some plants for your lake, is what I am saying. Which plants would suit your place, though?
You are in luck. The Mid-Atlantic region has some beautiful aquatic plants. The Native Plant Center of the U.S Fish and Wildlife Services, for one, lists over 41 choices. Let us meet 3 of them:
The Blue Iris, officially named Iris prismatica, is a hardy lakeshore perennial herb that is typically found in shallow water such as edges of ponds, sedge meadows, marshes, and along stream banks. Blue Iris forms narrow sword-like foliage less than 1/2″ wide reaching 1-2′ tall growing from thick creeping rhizomes. The elegant flowers 2-4″ across are usually light to deep blue and bloom from May to July.
The Fragrant Water Lilly also loves lots of sun and shallow lakes to grow in. This is the classic big white bloom everyone paints. They bloom June to September, opening in the morning and closing by noon. Water fowl, small mammals and bees love these guys. The official name is Nymphaea odorata, but it also goes by White water lily and American water lily.
Lizard’s Tail, scientific name Saururus cerunuus, is ok with shade. It can form colonies and make lovely islands for water fowl. It blooms from June to September with greenish white flowers that resemble fluffy tails. They prefer shallower sections of lakes, where the water is less than a foot deep.
These are a very few examples of what you can find here. There are also a few plants that experts consider invasive and problematic. They suck up natural resources and are a menace to the economy or agriculture. These include Water Chestnuts, Giant Salvinia, Curly Leaved Pondweed, and Water Hyacinth to name a few.
If you want help picking the right plants, contact us and we will gladly offer up our expertise.