En EspaŅol
Share

Ask Mr. Smarty Plants

Mr. Smarty Plants - Seeding the banks of a large pond

Ask Mr. Smarty Plants is a free service provided by the staff and volunteers at the Lady Bird Johnson Wildflower Center.

Search Smarty Plants
    
 
See a list of all Smarty Plants questions
Can't find the answer in our existing FAQs, submit a question to Mr. Smarty Plants.

Need help with plant identification, visit the plant identification page.
 
rate this answer
Not Yet Rated

Tuesday - October 18, 2011

From: Hempstead, TX
Region: Southwest
Topic: Seed and Plant Sources, Seeds and Seeding, Soils
Title: Seeding the banks of a large pond
Answered by: Guy Thompson

QUESTION:

I have a 2 acre surface pond that is mostly a hard clay bank all around. The water level is way down and I will begin filling it very soon. I need to somehow being affordable, plant something or things that are native plants that wildlife would enjoy around the pond to help slow down the errosion from happening. Should I use a netting or not with what plants. From Hempstead Texas, please help!!!! Brian

ANSWER:

A very good source of information on planting around the edges of ponds has been published by the Native American Seed Company (info@seedsource.com).  These suggestions include soil preparation as well a suitable plant species.  It will be important to loosen up your clay and mix in some compost to hold water and assure that oxygen is permeable into the root zone.  Native grasses are best for erosion control.  Several useful grasses for preventing erosion were listed in a previous Mr. Smarty Plants answer:

Grasses and grass-like native plants for Central Texas suitable for erosion control:

Bouteloua dactyloides (buffalograss) - full sun

Bouteloua gracilis (blue grama) - full sun

Dasylirion texanum (Texas sotol) - full sun

Hilaria belangeri var. belangeri (curly-mesquite) - full sun

Muhlenbergia lindheimeri (Lindheimer's muhly) - full sun

Nolina texana (Texas sacahuista) - part shade

Schizachyrium scoparium (little bluestem) - sun or part shade

Sorghastrum nutans (Indiangrass) - sun, part shade or shade

If your pond slope is steep enough to need an erosion-preventing blanket, Native American Seed also offers that.

Check out the Lady Bird Johnson Wildflower Center how-to article on water gardening for tips on planting aquatic plants in your pond.  The following excerpt from another previous Mr. Smarty Plants  answer can help with aquatic plant selection: If you need a list of plants to use, go to the Native Plants page of our website. Scroll down to Combination Search and select Texas for the state, and "wet" for  soil moisture, you will get a list of 237 native species. Another souce of names is the Aquaplants site of the Texas Agrilife Extension Service at the Texas A&M System that has a list with photos that identifies wetland plants.

For help in locating suppliers, go to our Suppliers Directory and enter your city and state in the appropriate space. You will get a list of nurseries that sell native plants in your area. 

The Houston Chapter of the Native Plant Society of Texas (NPSOT) has a directory of nurseries in the Houston area that sell native plants. Of particular interest is Nelson Water Gardens and Nursery that provides plans for ponds and water gardens as well as plants to go in them. Another source for this kind of information is the North Texas Water Garden Society.

Grasses suggested above (from our Image Gallery):

 

 

From the Image Gallery


Buffalograss
Bouteloua dactyloides

Blue grama
Bouteloua gracilis

Texas sotol
Dasylirion texanum

Curly-mesquite
Hilaria belangeri var. belangeri

Lindheimer's muhly
Muhlenbergia lindheimeri

Texas sacahuista
Nolina texana

Little bluestem
Schizachyrium scoparium

Indiangrass
Sorghastrum nutans

More Soils Questions

Difficulty with Clay Soil from Palm Bay, FL
August 22, 2012 - I had a very nice little native shady area behind my house for over 40 years, but now it has been cleared except for a 100 foot tall live oak in the center of this raised mound (50' x 80'). I've be...
view the full question and answer

Failure of highbush blueberry plant to produce in New Hampshire
July 25, 2008 - One of my highbush blueberry plants completely stopped producing. What can I do to revive it?
view the full question and answer

Shriveling agave from Miami Florida
August 23, 2013 - Dear Mr. Smarty Plants, Most upset - My beautiful agave (wish I could have submitted an image) has stared to misbehave. The once first liquid filled leaves, are starting to look more like the skin ...
view the full question and answer

Replacing hawthorn bush with muhly grass from Plano TX
April 10, 2014 - I am thinking of replacing a hawthorn bush with a muhly grass plant or two in an edged area with river rock cover in Plano, texas. It is the black soil and not a sandy loam. We have a sprinkler syst...
view the full question and answer

Damage to native elm in Texas
August 20, 2008 - We had a major landscape renovation done over the winter. One of the trees, an elm about 10 yrs old, remained in the bed although plants around it were removed. The tree has suddenly started turning...
view the full question and answer

Smarty Plants's Facebook profile Support the Wildflower Center by Donating Online or Becoming a Member today.

Mr. Smarty Plants wants you to be his Facebook friend. Click the Facebook icon to add yourself to Mr. Smarty Plants list of friends.
E-NEWSLETTER | BECOME A MEMBER | DONATE NOW | MEDIA | SITEMAP
© 2014 Lady Bird Johnson Wildflower Center