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Sources of cattail

 
                                  
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I'm in central Florida.  My pond is overrun with green algae, which is probably due to nutrient overload.  I want to fix this. I'm looking for sources (donations or purchase) of broadleaf cattail to filter pond water, preferably whole live plant or if not possible, seeds.  But, since cattail is a perennial, it takes a long time to grow from seeds. And the fact that many parts of the plant are useful in the permaculture sense, is nothing to sneeze at.

rich
 
                                      
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I live in colorado and they grow wild all over the place, I dug some up and made a bog near our pond. I don't think I could mail you any. The dirt they are in smells really bad. I would hate to open up that package!!!
 
                                  
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The smell comes probably from sulphur, a result of decomposition of waste.
 
John Polk
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Location: Currently in Lake Stevens, WA. Home in Spokane
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Algae in ponds can also be controlled with barley straw, as per this quote from Howe Seeds:

BARLEY SEED FOR GROWING BARLEY STRAW FOR USE AS A NATURAL ALGAECIDE IN PONDS AND FOUNTAINS

Barley straw controls the growth of algae in ponds and fountains. When the barley straw is placed in ponds, it begins to decompose and releases lignins into the water. The lignins are then oxidized into humic acids, which in turn, produce hydrogen peroxide. The continuous release of hydrogen peroxide stops algae from reproducing and stops growth of existing algae.

Depending on pond size, the straw can be used in bales, sprinkled in water as loose straw or conveniently packed into net bags. The amount of straw needed depends on the surface area of the pond. Approximately 1/3 ounce of straw per square yard of surface area is recommended. More may be used at first if water is already green and decreased once the algae is under control. Time needed to get algae under control depends on amount of algae already present in water and water temperature.

Barley straw is harmless to plants, fish, pets and wildlife.


(http://www.howeseeds.com/specialitygrains.htm)
 
Jonathan Byron
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You should be able to find plenty in ditches and around ponds near you. The trick is to find a place where you can dig them without getting arrested - not that cattail rustling is a big crime, but if the landowner gets alarmed, it could be inconvenient.
 
                                  
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I found some cattail in a ditch next to my access road.  I took 4 that I could pull out with roots. Dropped them in a sunny spot on the side of my pond, roots in water, tossed some dirt on the roots, hoping that will be enough.  If they survive, that should get the pond filtration process started.
 
                                  
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Good news: the transplants seem to be taking hold.  They're sprouting new growths from underwater.
 
Paul Cereghino
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Location: South Puget Sound, Salish Sea, Cascadia, North America
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We don't even plant it on wetland restoraiton sites, instead letting other things establish before the cattail comes in and establishes its clonal supremacy.  Seed should grow well on muddy receeding pond edges in spring.  Seeds are very small and in the fluff that lingers into the winter storms.
 
Brenda Groth
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Location: North Central Michigan
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pull up a few in the wild..they'll spread like crazy, if your pond is shallow you could lose your pond so make sure there is some depth as they will take over any shallow water
 
rose macaskie
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you an use the green algae as mulch, it seems to me an easy sort of mulch, it is easier to pull algae off a pond than pull up or cut plants. Ken Fern has an Asian sort of algae, it is one tha picks up a lot of nitrogen because it is acompanied by nirtrogen fixing bacteria or some such, azolla its called, that goes a pretty red in some seasons. It is a quickley replenishing easy source of mulch. There are people who consider it a pest but it seems it is not too much of one. I should check all that out before writing.

  Cattails are good if your water has pollutants in it they and the bacteria at their roots clean up pollutants.

  I wonder if they will serve in my torrent rapid mountain stream that disappears in the summer mounths to block it a bit so that it flows slower and gets wider, i am hoping they will serve as a damn as well as a water cleaner. trouble is get one nice effect lose another. The torrent rushing over stones is pretty. rose macaskie.
 
                                
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Location: Eastern Colorado, USA
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All you need is a flashlight and a shovel.  Go steal some from another pond.
 
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