Water gardens in Tenerife
Dragonflies, frogs, water lilies and goldfish, might not be the first things that come to mind when you think of Tenerife, but they are all to be found here. Even in tropical temperatures it's possible to create a pond and water garden, or your own personal oasis in the desert perhaps?
Tenerife gardening: Create your own oasis
Tenerife a subtropical island in the Canary Islands but it is still possible to create a water garden in your garden and to view these in parks.
Water gardens in Tenerife
An easy to grow floating plant
Water Lettuce (Pistia stratiotes)
Also known as Water Cabbage
Water Lettuce plants
Recommended Books about Water Gardens
Water gardening explained
|Backyard Water Gardens: How to Build, Plant & Maintain Ponds, Streams & Fountains|
Veronica Fowler’s comprehensive step-by-step manual shows you not only how to install your water garden, but maintain it entirely on your own. Backyard Water Gardens teaches you...
Cool Springs Press
|Water Garden, Self-Cleaning Fish Tank That Grows Food, Mini Aquaponic Ecosystem (Great Gardening ...|
Bring the fun of aquaponics inside with this closed-loop ecosystem Water Garden from Back to the Roots! This mini aquaponics aquarium requires 50% fewer cleanings than tradition...
Back to the RootsOnly $58.99
|The Tub Pond Handbook: A Comprehensive Guide to Creating and Maintaining Patio Ponds, Container W...|
PAPERBACK EDITION: The beauty and novelty of a backyard pond is on the wish list of people from all walks of life. But the required space, landscaping, logistics, maintenance, a...
Where to find water plants
Garden centres often have their own pools, and should be able to supply everything the ambitious water-gardener needs from pool-liners, fountains, pumps and waterside ornaments through to fish and oxygenating, floating and marginal plants. Amongst the latter, the Umbrella Sedge (Cyperus alternifolius), which looks like a miniature papyrus plant, is a very popular choice, and adds a certain exotic appeal. It can be grown as an attractive houseplant too, and is easy to propagate by dividing the crown or by cutting off one of the umbrella-shaped flower stalks, leaving a small amount of stem below, and then standing this in water until it roots.
Water lilies (Nymphaea spp .) are almost a tradition when it comes to garden ponds, and besides looking great they provide shade for the fish. The Water Hyacinth (Eichornia crassipes) and Water Lettuce (Pistia stratiotes) also float on the surface and provide a similar function. The former has shiny green leaves arising from inflated spongy stems and a mass of feathery roots below the water, and these can act as a great place for your fish to spawn. It bears a beautiful blueish-purple or lilac-coloured flower, hence its name.
The Water Lettuce has velvety fluted leaves and reproduces itself rapidly with daughter plants sent out on runners. This is the means the Water Hyacinth uses to propagate itself too, and both these plants can easily cover the water surface and may need thinning out.
They can be seen in all their glory in the ornamental pond at the Jardín Botánico in Puerto de la Cruz, and this magnificent garden is well worth a visit, a visit that will inspire any gardener with the sheer range of tropical and exotic species on display.
It's not just the plants that provide the appeal of the place, because terrapins can be seen in the pool as well, and they often haul themselves out of the water to bask in the sun. These attractive creatures may be available from pet shops but they tend to grow too large and may cause a problem by making a meal of your prized fish.
A popular hobby for many people
Speaking of fish, Red Platies (Platypoecilus maculata), a variety well known to tropical fish fanciers, can be seen swimming in the pond there too. In Tenerife, because of its high temperatures all year round, it is possible to keep such species in your garden pool, and this means you are not confined to a choice of goldfish or koi carp, but can be a bit more adventurous with the types you decide to keep.
It's not just the plants and fish you choose that will be part of your water garden, because wild creatures like dragonflies, damselflies and even frogs may eventually find a home there.
Top Tenerife Guide Books
Where to find out more about Tenerife
|Pocket Rough Guide Tenerife and La Gomera (Travel Guide) (Rough Guide Pocket)|
Discover this vibrant city with the most incisive and entertaining travel guide on the market. You can take this handy, pocket-sized book out with you anywhere, any time. Whethe...
|Collision on Tenerife: The How and Why of the World's Worst Aviation Disaster|
The world’s worst air disaster happened more than 40 years ago on a remote Atlantic Ocean island, when two fully loaded 747 passenger jets collided after a horrendous series of ...
Post Hill Press
Atlantic Records UKOnly $1.29
Tree Frogs in Tenerife
It may surprise you to know that there are actually at least two types of frog that can be found on Tenerife, the Stripeless Tree Frog (Hyla meriodonalis) and the Iberian Water Frog (Rana perezii). These species were introduced and tend to spawn wherever they can find freshwater. On these islands it is in short supply and irrigation tanks and reservoirs often become homes to these amphibians, but a garden pool would suit their needs, and makes a good mini nature reserve. The frogs of Tenerife need suitable places to call home.
So, by having a pond or water garden you can be doing a valuable bit of conservation work, as well as creating a place to enjoy. There's something very relaxing and pleasurable about a pool of sparkling water, and it doesn't have to be the type you can swim in.
Footnote: First published in Living Tenerife, 2005.
Copyright © 2012 Steve Andrews. All Rights Reserved.