plants

Exploring Wetlands and Wetland Plants

A wetland is an area which is covered mainly by shallow water; there may be deep water also depending on the terrain, and supports flora and fauna which are sometimes dependent on this kind of area. As water saturates the earth of wetland areas, the product is a type soil which oftentimes lacks the presence of free oxygen. The plants that survive here are well adapted to the lack of oxygen in the sol and they thrive. Wetland plants are also called hydrophytes and they are specialized plants that can survive in extreme conditions. The wetland plants in these kinds of area are numerous and some are even endangered.

Types of Wetlands

There are several types of wetlands all around our Earth. A bog and a moor have similarities but they differ in soil type, while there are two types of marches, the fresh water and the salt water marshes. A swamp has a wider water area compared to most wetlands with deep areas and plenty of trees and other wetland plants. A bayou can also be called a wetland because of its proximity to it although some people are more comfortable calling it a creek.

Three Kinds of Wetland Plants

There are wetlands in a lot of places all over the world and there may be different kinds of plants but there are basically three types of wetland plants found in almost all wetlands. These three are the floating plants, the emergent plants and the submergent plants.

Among the floating wetland plants are pondweeds, yellow lotus, duckweed and also spatter dock. There are around eighty kinds of pondweeds in the world and they usually grow in lake borders and in flowing rivers. The yellow lotus is so named because of its beautiful flowers and they usually grow in still waters. Duckweed is the smallest flowering plant in the world and their leaves measure less than a centimeter but they also cover vast areas of still water. Duckweeds are large floating leaves anchored by roots. They are also flowering wetland plants which produce yellow flowers.

Common emergent wetland plants are cattails, arrowheads, willows and wild rice. Cattails come in different varieties. They are characterized by their long stalk with a long oval spine. Arrowheads are so called because of their leaves which are the shapes or arrowheads. These wetland plants have long stalks from which white flowers bloom. Willows are large trees that come in several varieties and they grow in moist places usually along banks of streams or creeks. Wild rice is a variety of rice which grows in watery areas.

Submergent plants are those that has successfully adapted to water that they are totally immersed in it. The water milfoil and coontail are a few submergent plants. Water milfoil is a feathery aquatic plant that could stall a motorboat engine due to its sheer mass. They are very small but grow rapidly and cover a great area. Coontails are totally submerged plants that are not anchored to the bottom. They float freely around din sluggish water. These are just common examples of wetland plants which you may encounter.


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Gardening Tip #11

Some plants require re-potting for optimum growth but there are others that resent having their roots disturbed. Or their roots system may be small enough that they don't require re-potting. One way to check if your plant needs re-potting is to turn it upside down. Tap the pot to release the plant and check its roots. If roots are all you see, then re-pot. Sometimes the roots will come out of the pot. You should either cut them off or re-pot the plant.