Cleaning water – naturally

Naturally occurring wetlands have a natural, innate ability to remediate contaminants from water.

Over the decades British Flora have supplied many millions of reeds, Phragmites communis, for both habitat creation projects such as bird reserves to attract bittern, bearded tit and water rails, to name but a few. Common Reed is commonly planted to help with the cleaning of contaminated water due to its phytoremediation properties in constructed wetlands.

A constructed wetland area is a manmade water treatment facility duplicating the processes occurring in natural wetlands. Constructed wetlands are complex, integrated systems in which water, plants, animals, microorganisms and the natural elements interact to improve water quality.

If they are correctly designed, built, operated and maintained, constructed wetlands can effectively remove many pollutants associated with storm water or municipal and industrial discharges. Well balanced systems are particularly efficient at removing contamination such as BOD, suspended solids, nitrogen, phosphorus, hydrocarbons and heavy metals. However, reed beds for such purposes require some maintenance and correct initial design for them to function and mature over many years.

For over two decades British Flora have been involved in many hundreds of the country’s premier constructed reed bed projects for a wide range of applications as listed below.

British Flora’s wealth of experience in this field, particularly in plant selection, innovative design and value engineering construction as well as subsequent aftercare management, puts us at the forefront of this rapidly emerging industry.

  • Human sewage (single use to communities of upwards of 700 people)Kirkby Brook%2c Valley Rd (273)
  • Fish farming waste; marine and freshwater
  • Mine water discharges
  • Landfill leachates
  • Abattoir waste
  • Farmyard slurries and nutrient rich field runoff
  • Vegetable processing waste
  • Fire fighting foam
  • Road and airport runoff
  • SUDS: Sustainable Urban Drainage Systems
  • Balancing ponds and attenuation ponds

British flora is the largest specialist grower and supplies of over 300 British Native wildflower, marginal and aquatic species for over 25 years.
Everything they  produce is native and grown in Peat Free soil.  There are a wide variety of aquatic and marginal species, including a vast amount of Phragmites communis, along with submergents and oxygenating plants such as native UK water lilies, and pre-established coir rolls that are used to line river banks to prevent soil erosion. The coir rolls that British Flora can supply have been used in many places, including the waterways at Hampton Court for their restoration scheme across the park, as part of their erosion prevention scheme, to help form a natural waterway.
To complete the project, Biodiverse floating islands and pre-established coir rolls were planted with bespoke British native biodiverse species in the wetland bedding area at our nursery, before being taken to Hampton court to finish the planting project.

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Kirkby Brook%2c Valley Rd (274)