Pond Owners Handbook
The Marsh Marigold
The Marsh Marigold (Caltha palustiris) is one of the oldest plants in the pond world. It has be recorded to be around prior to the ice age. This hardy perennial is a showy early spring blooming marginal pond plant that can bloom from March to May and occasionally in the summer. It is a harbinger of spring and a “must have” for every water garden. The march marigold produces masses of large waxy butter cup like flowers of intense golden yellow with large almost round heart shaped dark green foliage. the plant grows 30-60 cm (1-2′) tall and wide. The marsh marigold is reproduced through seed or by division of crowns in the September or in Early spring.
The Double Marsh Marigold (Caltha palustris flore pleno) produces fully double golden yellow, pom-pom flowers that almost cover the entire plant. Propagation is by division in September.
The Marsh Marigold is a reliable bloomer year after year and grows best in shallow water or wet soil but will tolerate running water or waster up to 30 cm (1′) deep. It is said to have culinary and medicinal uses and lasts well as a cut flower. In the wild, grouse eat the seeds, deer and moose eat the plants.The Marsh Marigold can be found in swamps and ditches all over it’s native habitats of North America, Britain, Europe, and the Himalayas. In North America it is found from Newfoundland to Alaska and south to Oregon and South Carolina.
The “Caltha is derived from the Greek word “kalathos” meaning a goblet, referring to the flowers shape. It is also called “King Cup” and sometimes referred to as “Mare-blobs” or “Mary-blobs” from the Anglo Saxon “Mere” or “Myre” meaning Marsh and “Blob” meaning bladder. This refers to the round bud shape flowers growing in the marsh. Over the years it has also been called “Water Dragon”, “Water Cowslip”, and “Horse-blob” to name a few.
A great addition to any water garden is a Floating Island Planter. It is a low tech way of featuring plants in your pond. It makes non-floating annual and perennial plants flowers simply by placing a Marsh Marigold and others into the floating island planter. It creates instant colour, shade, protection, and filtration. Its an easy and impressive way to show off your favourite non-floating pond plant or garden plants. Pick up a floating island planter and see our large selection of pond plants.