Ever consider harvesting from your pond? Many pond owners have harvested copious amounts of algae from their ponds, but how about something that you might actually be able to use to nourish your body and loved ones?
An often overlooked aspect of water gardening is the growing of usable plants for our dinner tables. The majority of water gardeners spend lots of time cultivating aquatic plants that yield beautiful blooming flowers and interesting growth patterns and colors, keeping and cultivating these plants can generate a tremendous amount of satisfaction, however; most of these plants are only to be looked upon.
There are numerous aquatic plants that are not only beautiful but can also be used to compliment our meal times. Aquatic plant cultivation is a major part of food sources throughout most of the world; of course rice being one of the most popular aquatic plants that we consume worldwide. Most of these plants are very attractive as well and would serve very well in the beautification aspect of our water gardens.
Some plants such as water chestnut, lotus, cranberry, taro, and even cattail would need a little bit of preparation for our meals but not much more than most store bought produce items. Imagine preparing a fresh, wholesome meal with ingredients right from your pond.
Many plants such as watercress, aquatic mint, spatterdock, sweetflag, water celery are ready to use right after being picked and can be an unusual ingredient or garnish for your home cooked meals.
Some other aquatic plants that are very popular as a way to beautify our water gardens can also be put to good use in our kitchens and nourishing our families.
• Chameleon plant
• Bacopa
• Arrowhead
• Pickerel
• Sensitive plant
• Bulrush
• Marsh Mallow
• Even tomatoes can be grown in the right conditions!!

Throughout history these plants have been cultivated and wild harvested for the benefit of mankind through nutritional, medicinal, even “recreational” use and any of these can be grown right in your own water garden. Hungry? Grab a handful of cranberries! Your recipe needs a bit of jazzing up? How about some lemon grass. For those “boo-boo’s” grab for the marsh mallow and when your ready for some “recreation” cut some mint and get the mojitos going!
Using your pond to grow a bountiful harvest for your family is a great way to add a new dimension to your pond keeping experience and a great way to get back to some of the simpler things in life like growing some of your own food right in your backyard and it is something your entire family can enjoy and participate in.
You give a lot to your pond, now let your pond give back to you! I am not saying run out and grab anything from your pond for TONIGHT’S stir fry, however; with some intent, purpose, and planning any of us can create an amazing water garden that will provide us with an abundance of healthy edible plants that we can nourish our families with, save money, and add beauty to our lives. Plan a water garden that will not only be beautiful but now can also provide you with healthy wholesome and abundant foods. Commit to having a bountiful pond now!

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