"Flora" is another word for plant. Aqua flora are special water plants that gardeners can add to their ponds for decoration and also to improve the health of the pond. Like with the soil of conventional plants, aqua flora have conditions that they prefer. They also tend to be big producers of oxygen.
Aqua flora often play a large role in the ecosystem in which they reside. For example, sea grass produces the majority of the oxygen that the other life forms in the ocean breath. The sea grass also creates habitats that can house many other aquatic life forms. The aqua flora found in ponds are usually food sources for water fowl. However, as a home gardener you will not necessarily attract water fowl, and the water fowl would leave droppings throughout the garden anyway.
Aqua flora are usually land plants that have developed the ability to survive while being immersed in water, according to West Virginia University. The leaves of the aqua flora have developed the ability to float to the top of the body of water. They are often deeply dissected and have thick, waxy surfaces.
Aqua flora usually have to live relatively close to the surface of the water, since the sunlight has to penetrate and provide the flora with enough light to engage in regular photosynthesis activities. If you want aqua flora to survive, you must make sure that the pond in your garden is deep enough. Aqua flora also will need nutrients to absorb from the substrate at the bottom of the pond. Aqua flora prefer water that has a pH level between 6.5 and 7.2, according to the California Environmental Protection Agency. The water hardness must be between 4 to 12 dH. The water also must have carbon dioxide dissolved into it, so the aqua flora are able to produce the food that they need. This carbon can come from animal life in the pond.
To be considered aqua flora, the plant has to spend at least one part of its life cycle completely submerged in water. Otherwise, you do not have aqua flora in your garden but rather have plants that are capable of surviving in very wet conditions.
Aquatic plants in ponds are usually beneficial to an ecosystem, but they do not always contribute to the enjoyment of humans using the ponds, according to the University of Illinois. Those swimming in ponds with aqua flora can get tangled in the weeds and the green scum that floats to the top of the pond is often considered unattractive. These plants are usually removed by draining the pond and uprooting the aqua flora, since this flora will likely grow back if it is simply pulled up from the surface of the water. One thing you can do is stock the pond with special sterile carp that will consume the aqua flora.