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GavinC

A Hampshire Bog Garden

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Hello

I have been wanting to keep my small collection of CP in a bog garden. I sat my plants outside in their pots last summer and the pitchers did really well, but I wanted to make something more in keeping with the garden rather than them sitting in pots around the garden.

After discussion with the main gardener and getting her friends to help convince her that it was a good idea, I was allocated a spot and swiftly dug a large hole before she could change her mind.

Hole was lined with a pond liner and some holes added... I may have made a mistake here though. I tried to read up on this and ask non cp growers and the consensus was that I should put holes in the bottom so that it would not go stagnant.

So that was April, was filled with gravel at the very bottom and a peat/sand mix. I added 50 ltrs of rain water which disappeared and over time along with the rain I have added more water.

My concern is that it is not boggy... The peat is damp, I dug down best part of a foot and still just damp.

Do I start again with a new liner and put holes in the side rather than at the bottom? Or is that just what happens when you set up a bog and I just need to give it a bit more time?

Not ready to put the CP’s out yet anyway there are far too many slugs in the garden eating all the new shoots on the herbs, shame there isn’t a slug eating CP!

Any help or advice gratefully received

Gavin

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Your bog looks great, how many years has that been going?  My allocated area currently isn’t that big, but it’s in a part of the garden that gets the most sun during day which I figured was more important . 

 

Thanks for the advice.  I was hoping that someone would say it will be fine, but I kind of knew that I had to pull it all out and start again.  So that’s what I spent yesterday afternoon doing...   :dry: 

 

So bog back in the ground and filled up with water, couple of water tests,  total depth about 20”, water can escape at about 12” from the bottom.  Tried over filling with water and the level settles back down quite quickly so that mean my CP’s won’t be sitting in a pool of water, and the reservoir at the bottom should help keep my bog, boggy.

 

I’ll stamp down the compost later today and hopefully start putting my plants in later this week :Laie_98:  

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Sounds a lot better, but you may like to put a tube or similar (a bit of drain pipe) in, so you can get water out if you need to, particularly useful in winter, or in some of my bogs I have a removable drain plug (cork in a mounting plate siliconed to the liner) at the bottom of that tube which I remove in Nov/Dec.

 

Good luck and well done in convincing the lady, she will love it when it grows.

 

Cheers

Steve

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Hello Steve,

I have a tube into the bottom of the bog so I can check the water level, but I don’t have a drain.  I’m guessing that’s why the other gardener types suggested putting holes in the bottom, but I would be going through a lot of rain water to keep it boggy. 

How do you access the cork for removal and refit.   Do you have any pictures?

 

I think now that I have a water reservoir I’ll keep it as it is and see what happens.  Is the purpose of draining it just so you don’t get a build up stagnant water or is there a less smelly reason for draining in the winter?

Some of the plants I have, I know have take back into the greenhouse to over winter, but I purposely have some that I don’t.  If they are outside will they rot like they can do if stood in water in the green house?  I’m assuming natural bogs don’t drain in the winter so maybe the airflow outside helps??   I don’t really know, just beginning with the outside bog but looking forward to the growing season ahead :sun_bespectacled:

Thanks

Gavin

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Hi Gavin

I have no pictures, but the cork is set in a 100 mm square rubber pad for reinforcement, which is siliconed onto the liner and the hole punched through, this is located at the bottom of a 4" diam tube so you can see the water level and wide enough to get your hand in and I simply pull it out in winter or when I want to lower the water level.

The other  good reasons for an occasional drain (I do it a couple of days before a predicted deluge) is to get rid of long standing water, reduce any build up of salts and this introduces oxygen to the lower reaches of the bog, the plant roots and helps prevent anaerobic conditions occurring (any non moving body of water is stagnant by definition, but not necessarily smelly). This can be important as anaerobic conditions release volumes of gasses such as methane, and CO2 that can be heavier than air and build up to permeate the upper soil levels to effectively displace the oxygen within it, which can kill the plants. I have never experienced that but have had a bad experience once, when a bog was waterlogged for about two weeks having had high water levels for a while before that and by the time I realised there was something wrong (wilting plants = no oxygen) it was too late for a number of the plants. Since then I am careful with total inundations (two days max as a general rule) and high water levels. Don't get too paranoid though, normal rainfall and rising and falling water levels throughout the summer are generally fine without intervention and I too have reservoirs which dont cause problems as long as you get oxygen to the roots via rainfall, top watering or draining the bog occasionally.

If it starts to smell action is required.

 

 

 

Cheers

Steve 

Edited by billynomates666

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Thanks Steve,

That's really interesting, and a lot of what you said makes sense.  Its only a small bog, if it goes well and I get approval for a larger bog, then I will try to incorporate a drain.

 

During the summer I assume I can let the reservoir drain down naturally before topping back up with water (assuming we get loads of sun and less rain).  Winter may be more of an issue, I wonder if siphon or pump it out somehow.

 

Sadly I don't have a sense of smell so will have to get the main gardener to check that, ha ha she'll love me even more!

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Thanks Gavin! It's around 5 years old.

 

That's impressive. How do you deal with the excess of water (if you have one, not sure what state you are in) during winter?

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Hi Gavin

 

Yes indeed, smaller bogs no problem, you are quite right the level drops fairly quickly so they need topping up more often than emptying. Perhaps there is some way of de constructing a corner of the bog in winter and dropping the liner to a lower level so it drains a bit more?

Good luck with the future approvals

Cheers

Steve

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I don't do anything to my bog besides get the weeds out. I cover it If the temps dip below freezing but my bog just grows naturally. Right now it's rainy season and the bog does have sitting water but it doesn't sit long enough to effect anything negatively. Plants are a lot happier in the bog than pots.

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My bog has holes a lil more than halfway to the top. It stays very boggy. If you have the energy I'd replace the liner.

Amazing bog!!! Hope I can make one like that someday haha

Sent from my SM-G920V using Tapatalk

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Amazing bog!!! Hope I can make one like that someday hahaSent from my SM-G920V using Tapatalk

You will. Its pretty easy once you get the hole dug and filled with media.

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Amazing bog!!! Hope I can make one like that someday hahaSent from my SM-G920V using TapatalkYou will. Its pretty easy once you get the hole dug and filled with media.
Yeah I'm sure it's a super fun project! I might be moving more than once in the next few years though so I don't want to invest yet. One day when I have my own house and yard it will definitely be done :)Sent from my SM-G920V using Tapatalk

Yeah I'm sure it's a super fun project! I might be moving more than once in the next few years though so I don't want to invest yet. One day when I have my own house and yard it will definitely be done :)Sent from my SM-G920V using Tapatalk

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