Waterside Plants

What are waterside plants?

They are the marginal plants that grow around the edges of ponds, waterways, lakes and wetlands.

At Oz Watergardens we classify these plants as our Zone 2™ and Zone 3™ pond plants and they prefer water levels from the waterline down to about 20cm deep. See Zone Map page.

In more natural pond designs, the waterside plants help to stabilise pond edges and create a smoother blend between the pond and the surrounding landscape. They are of particular importance in improving water quality through their feeder roots, as well as improving the habitat by attracting wildlife.

How do I select waterside plants?

Waterside plants offer the greatest range in form and colour in almost any pond design.

When selecting waterside plants, it helps to understand the purpose that they serve.

Protecting fish.

Trailing or creeping plants that grow out over the water surface, can create a mat effect at the pond edge. This means that the clear pond water is further away and often deeper, so making it more difficult for predators such as cats to scoop at the fish.

Hide ugly plumbing and wiring.

Creeping plants can serve to help us with some of our design problems. You can use them to hide or camouflage ugly wiring and plumbing from pond pumps, filters and lighting.

Protect pond edges.

Waterside plants naturalise pond edges and help with erosion control. Pond edges and liners can also be damaged by other wildlife, particularly the claws of cats and birds. Clumping rushes and sedges can prevent some animals from coming too close, while other waterside plants that grow into dense mats, can blanket the pond edges.

Specimen or feature plants.

Many waterside plants are clumping plants that make them ideal to use in large urns.

Umbrella grass, Colocasias or Taros can be great accent plants in shady gardens. You don’t always need a lot of space to have a pond. Even a small courtyard containing decorative urns and waterbowls can still have a water garden.

Soften the landscape.

The water feature or pond is often the focal point in the garden. Good pond design looks not only at the pond, but also how it blends with the surrounding landscape. Choosing waterside plants that match the style of your garden helps to make the whole garden experience all the more enjoyable.

Size and scale.

Larger leafed water plants look better in a landscape that is in keeping with their size. For example, if you have a waterfall and pond with large rocks and boulders, then a small fine leafed plant will often be over looked, you may wish to use a Water Iris or an Egyptian Papyrus to balance the scale. Waterbowls for a table top display create interest with the use of smaller or more delicate plants such as Miniature Papyrus or Corkscrew Rush.


All ponds attract wildlife, from birds that come to splash, to frogs that come to stay awhile. Some waterside plants, like rushes and sedges (eg. Common Spike Rush, Eleocharis acuta), provide nesting materials, some food and others shelter.


  1. To view and select varieties of waterside plants, refer to our Zone Map
  2. For information on plant care and maintenance, go to our  Tips & Hints page.

Ready to contact your nearest garden center?

Waterside Plants collection

Acorus gramineus

Acorus gramineus Ogon

Acorus gramineus Variegatus

Alocasia macrorrhiza

Berula erecta

Bletilla striata

Canna X generalis Yellow

Canna Tropicanna

Canna Tropicanna Gold

Canna X generalis America

Canna X generalis Dr Eisler

Canna X generalis S. Lochner

Canna X generalis Tropical Rose

Canna X generalis Tropical Salmon

Centella cordifolia

Colocasia esculenta

Colocasia esculenta Amazon Queen

Colocasia esculenta Black Magic

Crassula helmsii

Cyperus alternifolius

Cyperus prolifer

Goodenia humilis

Goodenia lanata

Goodenia ovata

Hibiscus coccinea

Gratiola peruviana

Hydrocotyle verticillata

Imperata cyclindrica Rubra

Iris ensata Assorted

Iris ensata Court Jester

Iris ensata Diamond Night

Iris ensata Blue Lagoon

Iris ensata Enchanted Lake

Iris ensata Emperor

Iris ensata Freckled Geisha

Iris ensata Geisha Parasol

Iris ensata Gosan No Takara

Iris ensata Hekito

Iris ensata Hoyden

Iris ensata Imperial Velvet

Iris ensata Kimboshi

Iris ensata Island Paradise

Iris ensata Kings Court

Iris ensata La Tosca

Iris ensata Ocean Mist

Iris ensata Pastel Princess

Iris ensata Rose Prelude

Iris ensata Storm at Sea

Iris ensata Summer Snowflake

Iris ensata White

Iris ensata Worlds Delight

Iris pseudacorus

Iris pseudacorus Flora Pleno

Isolepis nodosa (syn Ficinia nodosa)

Isotoma fluviatalis

Juncus amabilis

Juncus decipiens Curly Wurly

Juncus effusus Spiralis

Juncus gregiflorus

Juncus pauciflorus

Lysimachia nummalaria

Lysimachia nummularia Aurea

Lythrum salicaria

Marsilea angustifolia

Mazus pumilio - Blue

Mazus pumilio - White

Mentha australis

Philydrum lanuginosum

Rhyncospora colorata

Saururus cernuus

Selliera radicans

Setaria palmifolia

Wachendorfia thyrsiflora

Acorus calamus Variegatus

Aponogeton distachyos


Bacopa caroliniana

Bacopa monniera

Baloskion tetraphyllum

Baumea articulata

Baumea rubiginosa

Cyperus papyrus

Egeria densa

Eleocharis acuta

Eleocharis dulcis

Hydrocleys nymphoides

Iris laevigata Albopurpurea

Iris laevigata Assorted

Iris laevigata Royal Cartwheel

Iris laevigata Snowdrift

Iris versicolor

Iris versicolor Gerald Darby

Iris hexagona Cuisine

Iris hexagona Good Vibes

Iris hexagona Assorted

Juncus pallidus

Lemna spp.

Eleocharis sphacelata

Leperonia articulata

Ludwigia pallustris

Marsilea mutica

Myriophyllum crispatum

Myriophyllum papillosum

Myriophyllum varifolium

Nelumbo nucifera

Nelumbo nucifera Cochranes Baby Pink

Nelumbo nucifera Cochranes Green Magic

Nelumbo nucifera Cochranes Snow White

Nymphaea Apricot

Nymphaea Assorted

Nymphaea Carnea

Nymphaea Chromatella

Nymphaea Darwin (syn Hollandia)

Nymphaea Daubeniana

Nymphaea Fabiola

Nymphaea Firecrest

Nymphaea Gonnere Double White

Nymphaea H.C. Haarstick

Nymphaea Helvola

Nymphaea Indiana

Nymphaea James Brydon

Nymphaea Joanne Pring

Nymphaea Karleen Harder

Nymphaea Madam Wilfrom Gonnere

Nymphaea Mrs Richmond

Nymphaea Norma Gedye

Nymphaea nouchali - cyanea

Nymphaea nouchali - versicolor

Nymphaea Paul Harriot

Nymphaea Perrys Baby Red

Nymphaea Pink

Nymphaea Pink Sensation

Nymphaea Red

Nymphaea Rose Arey

Nymphaea Sioux

Nymphaea Somptuosa

Nymphaea St Louis Gold

Nymphaea Sunrise

Nymphaea tetragona Alba

Nymphaea Tina

Nymphaea White

Nymphaea Yellow

Nymphoides crenata

Nymphoides geminata

Nymphoides spinulosperma

Oenanthe javanica Pink Flamingo

Pistia stratiotes

Pond Plant Fertiliser Tablets 140g Packet

Pontederia cordata

Pontederia cordata Alba

Ranunculus inundatus

Ranunculus lingua

Rotala rotundifolia

Schoenoplectus lacustris Albescens

Schoenoplectus lacustris Zebrinus

Thalia dealbata

Thalia geniculata

Cycnogeton procerum (syn Triglochin)

Triglochin striata

Tulbaghia violacea

Vallisneria americana

Typha latifolia

Villarsia reniformis