How to Transplant Wild Water Lilies to My Pond

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Water lilies are a great way to bring a touch of color to your water garden or pond. They're easy to care for and have a long growing season. If you can't find any at your local garden supply shop, it's possible to transplant wild water lilies to your pond. With a few supplies, you can get the job done in an afternoon and enjoy the fruits of your labor all summer long.

Things You'll Need

  • Small garden shovel
  • Water boots
  • Water pants
  • Newspaper
  • Aquatic potting soil
  • Aquatic plant fertilizer
  • Pot
  • Wire mesh
  • Pea gravel or small pebbles
  • Wait until May or June. This is the best time for transplanting these type of aquatic plants.

  • Locate wild water lilies. These can usually be found growing in the shallows of just about any larger body of water.

  • Wade into the water. You're going to have to dig under the root of the lily to take it out. The roots grow in a tuber, much like a potato. Locate the lily that you want and, with your hands, feel down to the bottom of the water. Gently dig out the tuber by hand, using a small gardening shovel, if necessary.

  • Wet the newspaper. Wrap this around the lily for the trip back to your pond.

  • Ready your planting basket. Fill it up about 1/3 of the way with aquatic planting soil. Use a special pond planting basket or take a regular pot and line the bottom with fine mesh, like you would use in a screen window or door. This will keep the soil from washing out.

  • Unwrap the newspaper and place the tuber of the lily into the planting pot. Cover with more aquatic soil. Cow manure is also good to use, as is bonemeal. Do not use any other type of manure or regular planting soil. Place some fertilizer pellets, specially made for aquatic plants, in the point according to the instructions.

  • Cover the top layer of soil with small pebbles or pea gravel. This will keep the soil in the pot from washing away.

  • Slowly lower your potted lily into your pond. The final depth will depend on the size of the lily. Allow the pads to gently float on the surface. You don't want them underneath the surface of the water.

Tips & Warnings

  • Water lilies don't like moving water. When adding them to your pond, be sure to keep them away from waterfalls or fountains.
  • Always use caution when digging wild lilies from a body of water. Also make sure that the lilies are not on private property.

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