Bog half the year

ninjabut(USDA z 8,CA)January 24, 2006

I live in a flatland area that is boggy most of the winter, but then dries up to the point of the ground cracking in the summer and fall.

Cannas and Callas do OK, but everything else tends to drown.

My neighbor has beautiful gardens, but he also has the $ and labor to raise all of his gardens. (He's also the designer of the Sonoma Co Flower Show and gets zillions of plants for free!)

I'm going to start planting several trees, bushes etc in mounds of dirt ( County will only let us bring in so much dirt due to protected wetlands) We can't add a foot of soil to our whole front yard, have to do it slowly.

Any ideas for wet/dry areas? TIA Nancy

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kwoods(Cold z7 Long Is)

Maybe since it is a protected wetlands you should research what is native to the area.

    Bookmark   January 25, 2006 at 9:20AM
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It sounds like what you have is an ephemeral wetland, which is very important habitat for amphibians, birds, and other wildlife.

You might try an advanced search in the USDA Plants database specifically selecting your county, plants that are native, and with wetland status. It should be able to tell you exactly which plants are native and would be apropriate for your situation.

Also, keep in mind, having a wetland on your property is a valuable asset, and by working with it, instead of against it, then you can enhance the beauty, wildlife and financial value of your land. There are even programs you might be able to apply for like CREP, which offer financial incentives for wetland restoration and protection.

Here is a link that might be useful: USDA PLANTS Database

    Bookmark   January 25, 2006 at 1:51PM
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ninjabut(USDA z 8,CA)

My property itself is not protected, but many in the area are. This is why the county only allows so much fill being brought in.
Thanks for the database. It looks a little beyond me, but I put it on favorites to do some research.
I think I'll hit up the Co Extention office to see what they suggest. There are so many different type areas in this county, they must have info on the different terrains.
Thanks for your replies. NT

    Bookmark   January 25, 2006 at 8:39PM
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Yeah, it is a rather complex database, and I thought of just doing the query for you and posting the results, but it was too large. If you send me a note, and include the county you live in, then I could run it for you and send the results as an attachment.

If you decide to try the database yourself, then just ignore any fields you don't understand, but enter the county, wetland status (use Control or shift to select everything from "Obligate to Facultive"), and select "U.S. Native". In the Growth Habit field you can also select "Forb/Herb" if you only want flowering plants, without shrubs, vines and grasses. You might also want to include the drought tolerance, since your conditions are both wet and dry in different seasons.

I've also included a link to a listing of California Native Plant Nursuries, which could be very helpful in selecting the right plants for your area.

Here is a link that might be useful: California Native Plant Nurseries

    Bookmark   January 26, 2006 at 11:13AM
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ninjabut(USDA z 8,CA)

Thanks so much for the California Native Plant Nurseries site! At least 6 are within 10 miles of my house! There are several more on the way to my sister's house, who we visit often. So we can make a side trip when we go there.
NT-Sonoma Co, CA The "real wine country"

    Bookmark   January 26, 2006 at 8:39PM
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