What kinds of native plants should you use for wetland restoration and why?

29 December, 2015

Choosing the right kind of plants is crucial for wetland restoration. In fact, it is almost always the barometer for a successful restoration. A big part of restoring the natural ecosystem of your wetland has to do with the type plants that you plan to grow.

Wetland restoration is the process of rehabilitating and reestablishing a wetland that has been damaged or destroyed.  It attempts to bring back the wetland to its natural ecosystem. And part of it is choosing the right plant species for the project.

After identifying the different zones of your wetland (perimeter fence, shallow standing water, deep pond, nesting island), you will now be able to determine what type of plants to use for your restoration.
Determining the right plants for your restoration is one thing, where to get your plants for your riparian planting is another.

Here are a few tips on where to get the necessary plants for your restoration:

● Use plants that have been locally sourced. Eco-sourced plants from nurseries are suitable plant species for your wetland restoration because they are already adaptable to the conditions of the said environment
● Buy from a reputable wholesaler.  Scour local nurseries from your local area, ask for the right plant species for your wetland restoration.
● Or you can draw your concept plant and place an order with a nursery (your plan will have some adjustments depending on the availability of such plants).
● If it’s a large project, you may want to enter into a contract with a wetland restoration specialist.

There are a host of restoration schemes for you to choose from when doing your wetland restoration.

Oftentimes it is a choice of using locally sourced plants, using plants from nurseries or propagating your restoration yourself.

You can also choose from a wide variety of plants for your restoration, some of which may have been already in your area. Native plants such as the cabbage tree, the manuka, or even flax are suitable native plants for your restoration. These plants are self-sustaining and can withstand potential threats while providing an extra aesthetic value to your property.

Where should you grow your native plants for your restoration?

Your native plants will thrive easily when you plant in:

● Areas with moderate climate. Plant them with minimum exposure to the sun, i.e., after soaking them well.
● In wet areas. Plant them during summer when water level is low and the water warm.
● Warmer coastal areas, especially with fewer frosts.
● Areas where there is enough shade, preferably within two years since the planting started
● On gullies and ridges, only after planting them in line with natural features.
● Areas with correct moisture zone.

Having the right plants for your wetland restoration sustains your property for a longer period of time.

You wetland restoration will help:

● Improve water quality – With the right restoration process. You can also get the right filtering for your wetland for water purification. In fact, a wetland with a suitable vegetation scheme improves water activity.
● Providing habitat for species – Wetlands attract a considerable host of animal and insect species while providing food and shelter. Increased in animal activity in your wetland will increase soil quality and food production as well.
●Improves property worth and profit – It takes many hands to restore wetlands. Not only does it provide employment to those who help restore its natural ecosystem, it also profits landowners by opening up more economic opportunities (eco-tourism, use of commercially viable native plants, etc).

Needless to say, wetland restoration is no walk in the park. It would be helpful if you seek a professional to do the work for you. Wetland restoration experts can assist you with cost effective design solutions and wetland plant supply.

This is where we at Rural Designs can help. We can help you in planning for your wetland restoration and provide you with cost competitive wetland management implementation services.  With our help, you’re ensures of a successful and effective restoration project.

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