Apr 2, 2014

Tabletop water garden

Here’s what you will need for your very own table-top water garden:

Glass or ceramic container, bowl, wide-mouth vase etc.
Water plants such as taro, water lettuce, water hyacinth, duck weed, fairy moss etc.
 Plastic pots shorter than the height of your glass vessel-Assorted rocks
Potting soil 
Charcoal bits
Mosquito fish (optional)
Pure water

Place the taro in your plastic pot and add soil. Pack the soil down snugly and cover with rocks and pebbles. Rinse off any loose soil from the exterior of the plastic pot. Make sure your bowl/vase/container is clean and free of cracks. Take a handful of charcoal and line the base of the vessel to help against odors. Cover with aquarium pebbles. Fill the vessel with the most pure water you can get your hands on; rain water, reverse osmosis water, or distilled. Place the potted taro into the vessel. Some loose soil may escape the pot- just scoop it off the top of the water, and add more rocks to the potted plant if needed. Pull off any dead roots from the floating water plants, and give them a good rinse before adding to the bowl. If you plan on taking the water garden outside, and then bringing it back inside later, mosquito fish are a good idea. Nobody wants mosquitoes hatching in their living room!

Before taking on a water garden, I’d suggest perusing a few books. I find so much inspiration from gardening books in general, but this one from Better Homes and Gardens does a good job of telling you what level each garden is, and how long it will take to complete.

One last note on water gardens- many water plants can be extremely invasive and destructive when introduced to natural bodies of water, so if you find yourself needing to dispose of any extra plants, please throw them in your compost heap, or trash bin and do NOT put them in streams, rivers or lakes. 

Thanks for reading, and have fun making your own tabletop water gardens!