How best to use pesticides on water lilies and in ponds
I’ve gotten a lot of mail recently about water lilies and ponds — much of it was about which proper re-agent to use to clear clogged ponds.
I even received an e-mail from a German company about one of its products for ponds. Wow.
I wish to share in part with you one of the e-mails I received and that I think is correct.
The sender did not wish to be identified. However, he is right on the mark as to re-agents for aquatic use. Here’s what he wrote:
“First of all, water lilies normally don’t get out of control, so I am not convinced that the problem (with a clogged pond) is water lilies.
“The problemmay be lotus, spatterdock, water hyacinth or other plants. Many aquatic plants can be killed with glyphosate.
“Glyphosate is a good product for homeowners because it has an excellent safety record. Only a few brands of glyphosate are labeled for use over water. Most aquatic glyphosate herbicides need the addition of an aquatic surfactant because most brands of glyphosate labeled for aquatic use contain no surfactant.
“It is the surfactant, not the glyphosate, that could harm the environment. An aquatic surfactant is needed since, without surfactant, aquatic glyphosate is not very effective.”
For all you plain-speaking people, such as I, a surfactant is a wetting agent that allows the re-agent to enter the water more easily.
My e-mailer went on to list some of the brands for water use: Rodel, Aqua Pro, Aqua Star, Aqua Master.
He added that this not an inclusive list, as other brands too are labeled for aquatic use. Also, he stated that some of these brands are not available for public use.
Again, both he and I agree that glyphosate is not very caustic to mammals and has a wide margin of safety for us homeowners and swamp gardeners.
I went out and bought some water lilies at one of the box stores.
They were in plastic containers labeled “Sulphurea” and “Attraction.” I am going to plant them in my small water garden and see how they mature.
They are a product of China, and I wonder if they have magical powers like the Chinese Immortal Lotus Blossom, who changed stone to mother of pearl — or was it to silver?
In the meantime, have planted these little guys in a pot, anchoring themdown about 18 inches in depth. I will fuss over themlike I do with my green-tea trees. But back to gardening above water. All my baby traveling iris have “taken,” and I now have six more plants. The piggyback fern had “babies” again, about a dozen, and I planted them in cups to get them started.
My wife took the original baby from a plant in a restaurant while we were having lunch; that was in the early 1980s. The original plant, and the restaurant, are long gone, but we still have this survivor. Now, again, she has babies with which to populate the plant kingdom.
Call Cash at (561) 744-4750 or e-mail him at email@example.com