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10' x 80' of very wet peaty-soil- any suggestions for plants?

 
                          
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I posted this on another site then realized that non-traditional ideas were more likely to be found here. Traditional would be to drain the spot. That isn't practical here.

So, I've tilled a 10 x 80' strip of the wettest part of my property. Drainage is not realistic in this spot- it's a drained peat bog, and further drainage isn't practical.
In spring/fall, 1-2 inches of standing water can be expected. It's currently fluffed up well, but will surely settle to being a bit of standing water at times again.

Elsewhere I am doing raised beds which seem to work great here.
I'd like to grow something 'different', so hoping for alternative crops that actually suit this spot.

It's a bit too wet for blueberries. And cranberries... probably would not get eaten(it's just me here). As well cranberries must be a massive pain to weed with chronic wet soil. My weeds(canary reed grass mainly) have taken over my rhubarb patch, and I need to start a new one. You can imagine that if rhubarb is being choked out by weeds, you have a major weeding issue!

Any other suggestions? I'm thinking some fiddleheads (they have proved hardy there). It's such a huge spot I'd like it to be productive! Thanks.
 
                          
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I should add that I'm in zone 6...
 
steward
Posts: 2524
Location: FL
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OSTRICH FERN.
The tender sprouts are known as fiddleheads.  They are delicious!
They are difficult to cultivate, but if you can pull it off, you have something to talk about.
Market price is $8-10 per pound and folks who know about the things will beat a path to your door.

Elderberries like it wet, makes a fine jam.
 
Ken Peavey
steward
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I did not read the last line of your post.  You have your head on right.
 
master pollinator
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Location: Central Texas USA Latitude 30 Zone 8
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Edible plants for bog garden:  http://www.pfaf.org/user/cmspage.aspx?pageid=79
 
steward
Posts: 7926
Location: Currently in Lake Stevens, WA. Home in Spokane
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Here are some fiddlehead recipes:

http://www.norcliff.com/recipe1/
 
pollinator
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Location: zone 7
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rice
 
pollinator
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Location: North Central Michigan
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first I would use elderberries and if you want some pretty ornamentals you can use dogwoods as well

I would pile some areas up with some soil and stuff to make small mounds and plant those to the blueberries, not actually completely raised beds but mostly just mounds where the blueberry roots are above the water a bit..but can still get as much as they need

a few cranberry or wintergreen might be nice and if you want some winter color and bird food put in some winterberry

if you like to eat cattails they would work there too but may be a bit invasive

wild rice might work in some of the wetter areas

there are also swamp plants that are some what edible ..like lotus and others see some of the dible wild plant books for ideas on those

you also might consider a pond for part of it?? maybe an edge nearer the dryer areas dig it deep and it will stay wet all year or most of the year
 
                                    
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ELDERBERRIES!  Why didn't I think of that!  Every swampy hole around here has them growing in profusion.
 
Posts: 171
Location: Western Washington (Zone 7B - temperate maritime)
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The Edible Pond and Bog Garden
http://www.pfaf.org/user/cmspage.aspx?pageid=79
 
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