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Bogs

Last Updated: 2/9/07

Introduction
Building a Bog
Plants for Bogs
Bog Links

I welcome input (text and photos) from others who have actually had bogs as I have not.

I wanted to at least mention bogs on Fishpondinfo but soon realized that there is a ton of information about them. I do not have time to research it all and write a lot but hopefully the links will get you started if you are interested in bogs.


Introduction


Bogs are those low areas where water collects but is not deep enough to be considered a regular pond. Bogs often dry out in the summer but not always. Bogs are different than generic wetlands in that the soil is acidic which hosts a different array of plant life. Pond animals are not as commonly found in bogs as in other water sources. If the bog has enough water then more animals will be there. The bog turtle is one species known to enjoy the cover and solitude of the bog. When walking through a bog, people would tend to have their boots sink in and get stuck. The soil often smells as it is full of dead plant debris. The main reason that someone would want to create a bog is for the unique plant life including carnivorous plants that live there.


Building a Bog


Unlike ordinary ponds, you will want to place the bog in a low-lying location. Dig the bog pond out as with any shallow pond. The differences are that you will puncture the liner and add dirt on top of that. Make small holes in the liner with a drill or a pitch fork once the liner is in place. Cover the liner and holes with small pea gravel so the holes are less apt to clog with dirt. Then top it with soil or sand. You can mix in some peat moss or sphagnum moss to lower the pH. True bogs are full of sphagnum moss. If you forgo the moss, then it becomes a wetland (and not a low pH situation).

Depending on the rainfall, size of the bog, and how fast it drains, you may have to add some water to the bog in the summer to prevent it from drying out completely. If your area gets very little rain, then few or no holes may be need in the liner. You want to keep the bog pond like a mud pit (or rather sphagnum pit) that is more wet when it rains but may dry down a little sometimes as well. How much the bog is a bog garden or a bog pond depends on how much water is over the soil and what kinds of plants that you want to keep.

Because of the organic nature of the bog, and the tendency of any pond to fill in over time, you may have to dig out your bog pond and refill it with fresh dirt (and put the plants back in) every couple of years to keep it in the best shape and reduce odors.

Mary sent me the following message on 12/8/06.
"...Check out www.blackjungle.com/bogsetup.htm for good info on bog garden bowls. They would be very much like a real bog because you keep them waterlogged and separate from the surrounding soil as they only like peat and sphagnum moss. What's really cool is you can keep them outside all year as long as you sink the bowl in the ground and cover with mulch in the fall. You can turn a whole plastic fishpond into a bog! I have big ideas to try this but I must start small. Will send you the pic when I get it made and add to the plants, I need to get pitcher plants too. If you get another Venus fly trap, this is the way to do it. Once it is made, sounds really easy to take care of as long as you avoid salt buildup by filling and draining with rainwater. They don't like clay pots because of the minerals; you have to use a plastic container. I would love to see what people have done with these!"


Plants for Bogs


Depending on the acidity of your bog, ordinary pond marginals may or may not grow in the bog. See the marginal list for a long list of possibilities. For the truly acidic bog, here are some carnivorous plants to try.

Venus fly trap
Pitcher plants
Sundew plant

Bogs can also hold certain fruits if the conditions are right:

Blueberries
Cranberries
Lingonberries
Huckleberries


Bog Links


These links were created and checked on 1/23/07. I was surprised that there are so many web sites about bogs, building bogs, and carnivorous plants. These few below are just some of them. It is too bad I do not have time to read them!

Garden Web Forum on Bog Gardens

How to Build a Bog Garden

Building a sphagnum bog garden

Making a bog garden

Building a bog garden

Turn wet land into spectacular bog garden

EPA page on bogs

Wikipedia page on bogs

Maryland's Bogs

Bog Links

International Carnivorous Plants Society

Carnivorous Plants

Mean Plants - carnivorous plants

Carnivorous Plant FAQ

Carnivorous Plants

Building a Pitcher Plant Bog

Pond Showcase - this is the bog page on my Pond Showcase site where people can show off their ponds. I need some bog entries so if you have a bog pond, add it to the Showcase.



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