Wet Meadow and Wetland Sites
WET MEADOW & WETLAND SITES have soils made up of clay and high organic matter, with high water tables or impervious layers that prevent drainage. They are wet most of the time.
Examples of WET MEADOW SITES:
- Roadside ditches
- Retention basins that catch run-off water
- Pond areas
- Wetland edges
Examples of WETLAND SITES:
- Newly created wetlands and wetland restoration sites
- Retention basins with wetland functions
- Flood plains, pond edges, and open water
- Wet bioremediation sites
Eradicate existing vegetation by having a licensed spray technician apply an approved herbicide, such as glyphosate (Rodeo?) or other aquatic herbicide formulation, to control undesirable vegetation. CAUTION: Some persistent species, such as purple loosestrife, phragmites, or reed canary grass, may need multiple applications of glyphosate. The soil is often too wet to till. Newly constructed wetlands, retention basins, and wet construction sites should be seeded as soon after construction as possible. Leaving the surface rough by creating mounds and kettles for an undilating microtopography can be very beneficial in obligate wetlands.
Habitat: Wetland sites, by necessity, must have wet soil or saturated soil to standing water, a high water table, and vary from partial shade to full sun.
Fertility: Due to the potential for water contamination, the use of lime or fertilizer in wetlands is not recommended. We do recommend the addition of organic materials when topsoil has been depleted or removed. Check your soil pH and select species adapted to that pH.
Seeding Method: Hand seed, broadcast, hydroseed, or drill seed when the water table is drawn down. It is not practical to seed any wetland where the water is more than 2” deep or where severe flooding is likely to occur before germination. The same caution applies to mulching. Often, natural seed banks (seeds in wetland soil) will establish part of the vegetation cover.
Very little can be done the first year. Spot treat invasives with appropriate herbicides. Burning (by experienced professionals) is an alternative to mowing every third year. NOTE: Wetland plants can often tolerate drier conditions than their indicator status.