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7 Amazing Types Of Aquatic Plants For Your Koi Pond

Your backyard pond should look as incredible as you want it to.

Everything from the water to the surrounding area.

And especially the pond plants.

If you don’t like them, how can you love your backyard pond?

We don’t think anyone should feel that way about their pond.

You can use this list of 7 amazing types of pond plants we have put together to create your ideal look:

  1. Water Lilies
  2. Lotus Flowers
  3. Marginal
  4. Trailing
  5. Tropical
  6. Floating
  7. Submerged

Let’s see what is in each category.

You can discover the other important elements of ecosystem ponds >>

Pond with different types of aquatic plants

Popular Pond Plants for Your Backyard Pond

5 Types Of Water Lilies


  • One of the most popular pink hardy lilies, it will grow beautiful flowers throughout the season
  • Flower size 6-7”; leaf size 8-9”; leaf spread 3-4’
  • Good for any size pond

Pink Sensation (featured below)

  • Many people consider this to be the best hardy pink lily as it stays open longer. Pink sensation blooms the entire season
  • Flower size 5-6”; leaf size 10”; leaf spread 4’
  • Best for medium to large ponds
Pink water lily aquatic plant for pond


  • Hardy lily with deep red flowers that deepen in color each day
  • Flower size 7-8 “; leaf size 10”; leaf spread 4’
  • For any size pond


  • Hardy bloomer with multiple large peach/salmon color flowers with lighter tips
  • Flower size 4-6”; leaf size 8-10”; leaf spread 4-6’
  • Suited for ponds of all sizes

Chromatella (featured below)

  • A white and yellow lily known for both beauty and performance
  • Flower size 4-5”; leaf size 8-9”; leaf spread 3’
  • Good for any size pond or tub garden
Aquatic plant- white lotus

5 Types of Lotus


  • Double snowy-white blooms
  • Blooms 8-10”; height 4-6’; for water depths up to 4’
  • Good for medium to large ponds

Momo Botan

  • Double blooms are rose-pink
  • Flower size 4-6”; height 2-3’; for water depths up to 2’
  • For small ponds and tub gardens

Mrs. Perry Slocum (featured below)

  • Blooms are pink flushed with yellow the first day, changing to pink and yellow the second day, and finally turning cream with pink on the third day
  • Flower size 8-12”; height 4’-6’; for water depths up to 4’
  • Best in medium to large ponds
Ms perry slocum blooming white pink and yellow
Photo by Sage Ross – license

Rosea Plena

  • Double, rosy-pink blooms
  • Flower size 6-10”; height 4-5”; for water depths up to 4’
  • For medium to large ponds

Lutea (featured below)

  • Single yellow blooms
  • Flower size 4-12”; height 3-5’; for water depths up to 4’
  • For medium to large ponds
White lutea lotus pond plant blooming

5 Types Of Hardy Marginal Plants

Sweet Flag

  • Stiff shiny green strap-like leaves that resemble those of iris
  • Full sun to partial shade
  • Grows at the pond edge
  • Grows 2-4’

Corkscrew Rush

  • Spiraling twisted dark green wiry stems with small brown-green inconspicuous flower clusters in summer
  • Requires full sun to partial shade
  • Grows 12-18” tall, water depth up to 2”

Blue Flag (featured below)

  • Beautiful blue petals with an intricate middle section
  • Mid-season bloomer
  • Grows in full sun with moist soil
  • Grows to 3’ high, water depth up to 6”
Beautiful blue flag iris

Miniature Cattail

  • Small brown cylindrical seed heads rise above slender, stiff leaves in late summer
  • Grows in full sun
  • Foliage grows 18” tall, stalks 20-30”, water depth moist to a maximum of 2”

Pickerel Weed (featured below)

  • Violet-blue, spike-like flowers exhibit from spring through early fall
  • Thrives in dense colonies along pond edge and in bogs
  • Grows 2-3’ tall, water depth up to 12”
Purple pickerel weed looking amazing
Photo by Bob Peterson, resized – license

3 Types Of Trailing Plants For Naturalizing Edges

Creeping Jenny

  • Also called moneywort, it has round green leaves and vibrant yellow cup-shaped flowers
  • Requires full sun to partial shade
  • Grows in mats around 3″ tall, water depth up to 2”

Parrots Feather

  • Fast growing, lush with lacy lime-green foliage
  • Good oxygenator and fish shelter, it thrives in sun or shade
  • Grows 4-6″. water depth maximum 24”

Water Forget-Me-Not (featured below)

  • Fragrant, dense clusters of small, bright blue flowers with yellow eyes appear in early spring
  • Requires sun or shade
  • Grows 8-10”, water depth up to 6”
Water forget-me-not flowers

2 Types Of Tropical Plants

Canna Tropicanna

  • Striped stunner with colored stripes changing from burgundy to red, pink, yellow, gold and deep green
  • Sometimes mislabeled by water garden retailers as ‘African Sunset’
  • Grows 4-6’ tall, water depth moist to 4”

Water Hyssop (featured below)

  • Tiny oval leaves form a busy clump that grows best in full sun
  • Delicate blue blossoms persist all summer
  • Grows up to 6″, water depth up to 2”
White water hyssop
Photo by Bob Peterson, resized – license

3 Types Of Floating Plants

Fairy Moss

  • A small tropical plant that forms mats of bluish-green, lacy fronds
  • Pale green in summer but turns red in autumn. Fast-growing surface cover
  • Grows up to 6″

Water Lettuce

  • Has velvety blue-green ribbed leaves that form a rosette
  • Roots offer shelter for fish and absorb nutrients
  • Grows up to 10″

Water Hyacinth (featured below)

  • One of the most beautiful and useful floating water plants
  • Fast growing, it fills a pond with purple blossoms suspended above floating green leaves
  • Valuable in water purification, but it can be invasive in warm climates
  • Grows up to 3′, leaves 4-8″
water hyacinth enjoying a pond shower

2 Types Of Submerged Plants


  • Hardy plant resembling a spruce tree
  • Branch-like stems with spiny foliage, they provide great fish spawning spots
  • Stems can grow up to 2′, leaves .5-1.5″


  • A cheery plant with green segmented leaves and white flowers can sometimes be seen at the surface
  • They grow on the bottom of a pond anchored by rocks
  • Stems can grow 10-33′
Fanwort submerged pond plant
Leslie J. Mehrhoff, University of Connecticut,
Creative Commons License   licensed under a Creative Commons Attribution 3.0 License.

Choose Your Favorites And Craft Your Pond!

You deserve the best pond plants for your backyard paradise, and this should help you find them. But what if you don’t have enough room for all these awesome pond plants?!

You can make room and more with a wetland filter >>