Creating an Oasis with a Bog Garden Creating an Oasis with a Bog Garden

A bog garden is a marshy little area designed to create a natural setting, and it’s versatile because you can grow a wider range of plants than in a traditional water garden. The soil in a bog garden is continuously wet, which is suitable for marginal plants as well as wetland plants.

A bog garden can be created as a separate entity in your landscape design or as an addition to your water garden. They look exceptional alongside a water garden because they contain lush foliage and colorful flowers. Bog gardens are also an excellent choice if you don't have room for a large water garden.

Bog gardens can be planted in an area of your yard that remains wet year round. If you have a waterlogged area, it will be the perfect spot to set up your bog garden. If you choose a dry spot you will need to use pond liner material and may need to water it frequently, as the soil needs to stay moist. Installing a seep hose is another option too.

The bog garden should be about 6 feet wide and 18 inches deep. Line the bottom with sand; this is especially necessary if you will be using a pond liner. Creating a bog garden smaller than 6 feet could result in the soil drying out or needing more frequent watering.

You will create several levels or shelves to grow your plants in. Creating a bog garden is much like creating a water garden except you will fill the hole in with a good blend of topsoil and organic material.

Good bog garden plants include:


  • Aruncus
  • Astilbe
  • Caltha
  • Sardamine
  • Filipendula
  • Hardy ferns
  • Hemerocallis
  • Hosta
  • Iris
  • Ligularia
  • Lysichiton
  • Zantedeschia

When adding plants, begin in the center and work your way out. Place the plants that require the most moisture in the center of the bog. This area will hold more beneficial moisture for those plants. Plants that require less moisture can be planted around the edges or between rocks to create a natural effect.

Using various sizes and shapes of rock will give the bog garden a more natural look. After all the plants have been planted in the bog, add a top layer of loose organic mulch. This will give the plants nutrients and help hold moisture in.

Creating a bog garden will give your landscape a nice tropical feel, create a small oasis for plants, and give your landscape a rain forest ambiance.

Got a New Project You're Proud of?

Post it on Your Projects!