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Suggestions for bog plants?

Posted by mainerose 4 (My Page) on
Mon, Jun 26, 06 at 14:07

Oh, please please, please---another 5 days of rain predicted---large swaths of my yard have standing water---my willows are LOVING it---but I really need some suggestions for plants that enjoy having their feet wet (I feel like I'm growing webs between my toes!). What is flourishing in your soaking wet garden this year?

Follow-Up Postings:

RE: Suggestions for bog plants?

I know the wild blueberry(high bush) in Mass grew in swamps, the cultivated don't like it as wet but can handle occasional spells. Cranberries, they grow in bogs. Seen them growing wild on the shore of Watchusset resivor in the water. Seen some wild irises around in wet areas(poisnous) There is a semi Artic bog in Lubec at the state park(lighthouse)that has a wood walkway and plant markers. Pitcher plant is one. Google "plants for wet areas" still can't tell if you are serious.

RE: Suggestions for bog plants?

There are a number of ferns that like moist soil but don't grow in water. Royal fern, cinnamon fern are two. The Filipendulas are a genus of perennials that like moist soil, and of course the astilbes. Actually, there are many but they don't grow in water, just moist soil.

RE: Suggestions for bog plants?

Yes, golddogs, I am serious :) I do have a boggy area that could use some attention. I tried the Bog Plants forum but most of the posters were in milder zones so I didn't get much help. Thanks for the suggestions---I will pursue them.

RE: Suggestions for bog plants?


I second the suggestion of irises. The image in my mind is of swaths of various colors of Siberian (and perhaps other types of) iris. And Cattails. I don't know anything about tall-growing grasses, but something in this category might be interesting.

Keep it simple...

Just think what will happen when we finally do get a little shot of sunshine.


RE: Suggestions for bog plants?

Is your wet area damp to wet year-round? If so and you are looking for larger plants, there are a fair number of shrubs that like wet feet.

Two deciduous rhododendrons: rhodora (R. candense) blooms magenta in very early spring followed by blue-green foliage, and swamp azalea (R. viscosum) blooms white to light pink summer and may have nicely colored fall foliage.
One evergreen rhodie, R maximum, is moisture tolerant and blooms about now. There are a bunch of selections for flower color, etc that you may be able to find at specialty mailorder nurseries, that might not but most likely will have the same moisture tolerance.
Labrador tea (Ledum groenlandicum or Rhododendron groenlandicum) has evergreen foliage and small white spring flowers.

High bush blueberry (Vaccinium corymbosum), has flowers, fruit, and red fall foliage
Huckleberry (Gaylussacia frondosa) is similar to blueberry.
Red chokeberry (Aronia arbutifolia) has white spring flowers, red fruit and fall color, and black chokeberry (A. melanocarpa) has similar characteristics with dark berries.
Serviceberry or shadblow (Amelanchier spp.) has early white spring flowers berries the birds love and may have nice fall foliage. Different varieties are from large tree to large shrub sized.
Wintergreen (Gaultheria procumbens) make a nice loose evergreen ground-cover with small white flowers and red fruit.
Summersweet (Clethra alnifolia) has late summer flowers in white to pink, and many selections.
Red osier dogwood, (Cornus sericea or C. stolonifera) has bright red stems.
Northern arrowwood viburnum (V. recognitum) has nice panicle of white flowers, followed by berries if there is more than one variety in the vacinity.
White cedar (Chamaecyparis thyoides) is an evergreen that likes wet feet and you can find selections from large shrub to large tree in size.

Some other perennials include turtlehead (Chelone), white to pink late summer flowers; cardinal flower (Lobelia cardinalis) scarlet late summer flowers, marsh marigold (Caltha palustris) yellow early spring blooms, several kinds of gentian, fringed, closed or bottle are two of them, and many kinds of the fibrous rooted iris, like Japanese, Siberian, blue flag.

There are several ferns, like cinnamon (Osmunda cinnamomea), Royal (O. regalis) and interrupted (O. claytoniana) that are lovely and like wet feet.

Regardless of what you put in, I'd add organic matter to your wet area before or during planting, since that will help keep it evenly moist, and mulch it for the same reason. I'm glad you want to work with what you've got!

RE: Suggestions for bog plants?

My favorites are Sanguisorba or commonly burnet, false turtleheads (white and pink), yellow flag iris and marsh marigolds.

RE: Suggestions for bog plants?

  • Posted by suenh cold end of 4! (My Page) on
    Fri, Sep 15, 06 at 8:39

Iris ensata and our native iris versicolor do well. Lot of the lobelias do well, some are tender but lots make it.
Marsh Marigold, mysotis scorpiodes, turtle head.

Yellow flag iris is a banned plant in most states, proceed with that one with caution. It has ambitions of taking over the world and chokes out natives with ease.

RE: Suggestions for bog plants?

Sue is right about Yellow Flag Iris (Iris pseudocorus). It is tough, well adapted and grows easily from seed. If you have it, be certain to cut the flowers when they fade... you don't want this one to set seed! It is a handsome plant, though... considered by many to be the original "fleur de lis" you see in French heraldry.

We had it for years (and likely will for many more ;) ), but yanked it and reworked its site a year ago. I have been alert for its emergence and have brutally suppressed it.

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