Plantings for areas that flood - Knowledgebase Question

Milwaukee, Wi
Question by julie_riemer
February 8, 2011
I have an area next to a river that floods in the spring, is under water for 4-6 weeks and then can get very dry in the summer. What can I plant that can tolerate these conditions? Thank you! Julie


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Answer from NGA
February 8, 2011

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Since you cannot change the soggy soil, you can choose plants that will tolerate seasonal flooding. Here are a few to choose from:
Aconitum (Monkshood), Hibiscus (Rose Mallow), Actaea (Bugbane), Isolepsis (Scirpus) (Fiber Optic Grass), Alchemilla (Lady?s Mantle), Matteuccia struthiopteris (Ostrich Fern), Alocasia (Elephant Ear), Monarda (Bee Balm), Aruncus (Goatsbeard), Mimulus (Monkey Flower), Asclepias incarnate (Swamp Milkweed), Miscanthus(some varieties) (Maiden Grass), Aster novae-angliae (New England Aster), Molinia caerulea (Purple Moor Grass), Astilbe, Myosotis (Forget Me Not), Astilboides tabularis (Shield Leaf), Osmunda regalis (Royal Fern), Athyrium (Lady Fern, ) Panicum virgatum (Switch Grass), Bergenia, Phalaris arundinacea (Ribbon Grass), Blechnum (Deer Fern), Physostegia (Obedient Plant), Canna, Polygonum (Soloman?s Seal), Chelone lyonii (Turtlehead), Primula (Primrose), Cyrtomium (Fish Tail Fern), Rodgersia (Rodger?s Flower), Gunnera (Dinosaur Food), Sisyrinchium californicum (Yellow Eyed Grass), Hosta (Plantain Lily), Thalictrum (Meadow Sweet), Ligularia, Tiarella (Foam Flower), Lysimachia (Loosestrife), Tradescantia virginiana (Spiderwort), Helenium autumnale (Helen?s Flower), Trollius (Globe Flower), Helianthus angustifolia (Swamp Sunflower), Zantedeschia (Common Calla), Arenaria (Corsican Sandwort), Lysimachia (Creeping Jenny), Galium (Sweet Woodruff, ) Mentha (Corsican Mint), Houttuyuna (Chameleon Plant), Potentilla (Spring Cinquefoil), Laurentia (Blue Star Creeper), Vinca minor (Dwarf Vinca).

Hope this short list is helpful.

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