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Container Water Garden

Pond in a Pot! How to Make a Stunning Container Water Garden

Starting a container water garden is fun, in which you can experiment with growing water lilies and other lovely aquatic plants. Selecting tubs and having a good choice for plants are the basic tricks for this form of gardening.
Gardenerdy Staff
Last Updated: Sep 25, 2017
Container water garden is an excellent choice for avid gardeners who want to have a garden pond, but do not have space to construct one. Truly speaking, this form of gardening is similar to any form of container gardening, except that the former involves using a tub that can hold water for a prolonged period. Do something new by growing this miniature aquatic garden, and you can make your gardening project a complete one by introducing attractive water plants.

Container Water Garden Plants

The type of plants suited for this mini-aquatic garden depends on sunlight exposure, size of the container and many other factors. Floating aquatic plants and flowering plants require longer sunlight exposure than bog species. Select plants that grow well in combination to balance the ecosystem. List of water container garden plants includes:
  • Lotus flower and water lilies
  • Dwarf lily
  • Water hyacinth
  • Salvinia longifolia (giant velvet leaf)
  • Water lettuce
  • Duckweed
  • Cork screw rush
  • Sagittaria (arrowheads)
  • Dwarf papyrus
  • Blue flag iris
  • Water blue bells
  • Sweet flag
  • Yellow flag iris
  • Calla lily
  • Parrot feather
  • Water mint
  • Fanwort
  • Wild celery
  • Anacharis
Container Water Gardening Tips

In order to create a naturally balanced ecosystem, you can introduce snails and fish in your container gardening project along with water lilies and other aquatic plants. For this, you will need to choose a larger tub to avoid overcrowded effect. These aquatic organisms add interest and clean water, thereby bringing a balancing effect to your aquatic garden. The required supplies and tips for container water gardening are highlighted below.

Decide the Location
Select a location with utmost care. Make sure that the area is exposed to 4-6 hours of sunlight everyday for healthy growth of aquatic flowering plants. Once you fill water in the tub, it will be very heavy to lift. So, place them in an accessible, yet undisturbed location. You can even place the container plants in a patios and decks, where they receive some amount of morning sunlight.

Select the Container
The second step is choosing the tub. Container or tubs used for water garden are different from the regular pots that have drainage holes at the bottom. An unused bathtub also works well, or you can purchase specialized tubs having a larger water holding capacity. If you adore lotus and want to plant lilies, then go for a plastic container of 20-24 inch wide and 12-16 inch depth.

Filling Water
Once you purchased the container and placed it in an ideal location, the next thing to do is fill water. It need not be filtered water or purified water. A simple idea is to take tape water in 2-3 buckets (or as per capacity of the chosen tub), and let them sit uncovered for 1-2 days. This allows evaporation of chlorine, making it ideal for your container water garden plants. Fill the tub with this water, and you are ready for plant introduction.

Introduce the Plants
Grow the emergent plants in individual small pots with heavy clayey soil. Place 2-3 pots in the larger container by maintaining adequate spaces. If the depth is higher, your emergent plants may submerge in water. For such a case, you can line the bottom of the pots with terracotta or bricks. Finish off by adding submerged and floating plants. Follow basic aquatic plant care and give optimal light, or else your flowering plants will produce less blooms.

Indeed, container water gardening is the easiest way to enjoy the beauty of garden pond in a smaller version. Hoping that you replace evaporated water, feed plants regularly and provide adequate sunlight, it requires least maintenance. When winter comes, consider overwintering your miniature water garden. You can bring the tub indoors, or if it is very heavy, transfer the plants and fish into another water filled container. With the arrival of spring, you can start the same container water garden again.
Classic Fountain Beside a Medieval Wall
Closeup of fresh mint plant leaves with water drops
Iris marsh.
Sagittaria in the pond. Top view
Corkscrew grass, Juncus effusus, root of the matter
Green floating water lettuce (Pistia)
Pink Water Lily with reflection