Rocks, Bottom Drains – The Debate ContinuesToday I came across a social media debate on bare liner ponds with bottom drains and water gardens with rock sides and bottoms. This pond industry debate has been going on for several years now but in reality, both sides have some great points. Ultimately it comes down to what type of pond are you looking for? I hope this article will give you some things to consider.
Should I install a pond with a gravel bottom or a bare liner with a bottom drain? Read more
The Art of the WaterfallWe have all seen both the “WOW!” waterfall as well as the “What were they thinking?” waterfall, right? Most prospective customers have been exposed to the latter, which makes selling them on your better-built and more aesthetically pleasing waterfall much easier. Since the aesthetic aspects of a waterfall are subjective, I will try to focus this article on the structure and mechanics of how to properly build a natural-looking waterfall. Read the full article
Spring Pond KeepingWe survived another winter. Though some pond keepers breeze through winter with summer like conditions, many shovel snow and wait for ponds to defrost. A lot of things might have occurred in your pond during the winter, depending on your location and your overwintering choices. Cooler water temperatures can cause problems that do not appear until the pond runs again. Even drained ponds might experience problems similar to an undrained water feature. Before starting spring pond rejuvenation, assume the worst: ... Read the full article
What Makes a Koi Pond a Koi Pond?According to anyone who has a fish pond — or calls me to come over and assess his pond and its issues — all ponds with fish are “koi ponds.” If you could ask a koi, however, it would disagree! A koi pond is one that properly addresses the needs of the koi, no matter what construction or filtration style the owner desires. A koi pond is first about the needs of the fish and second about the aesthetic desires of the owner. Read the full article
Rainwater Harvesting, Now Add it to Your Business:From space ‘the earth’ is a giant blue marble, with water so prevalent it literally colors our very perception of the globe. In the face of such abundance, it is hard to imagine how scarce a resource fresh water is. 97.3% of the water on the planet is salty, useless to terrestrial plants and animals. Of the 2.7% left, more than 2% is frozen... Read the full article
Sizing Gravel-filled and Water Matrix Reservoirs for Pondless Features:Like most of us out there, I had been filling my pond-free reservoirs with gravel, usually 3/4" - 1" screened, sizing the reservoir so the water around the stones would suffice to run the stream and falls. As you already know, most of the reservoir space gets taken up by that gravel in there, so I learned how much volume to excavate the hard way ... Read the full article
Add stone carving to your pond business:Today’s pond customer will often look to his installer for landscaping and surrounding decorations to complement his new water feature. In the past, many installers have allowed these valuable supplemental sales to pass them by. Some of those who have made the foray into this business have limited themselves to providing plants, gazing globes, ceramic/resin vases... Read the full article
Overwintering Pond Fish Indoors:Just how cold can it get in some parts of the Continental United States? Does it get cold enough to freeze ponds solid? It can get very cold, as low as -30 to -35°F. And yes, it can get cold enough to freeze some ponds solid. Small ponds and above-ground ponds are especially at risk of this happening. Larger, in-ground outdoor ponds of, say, 1000 gallons that are at least 2.5 feet deep can successfully overwinter hardy fish without supplemental heat during these severe conditions. Read the full article
Algae Exposed from Pea Green to Pristine:Pea-green soup water in ponds is the result of a bloom of single-celled planktonic algae. This algae is free-floating algae, which is different from string, or filamentous, algae. Free-floating algae requires different control method than those required for string algae. Compared with string algae, planktonic algae is much easier to deal with. Being able to recognize what causes these single-celled algae species is an important part of this equation. Read the full article
Water Quality - Testing the WatersWhat's in your water? Is it safe? Do you know? In most instances, a pond owner will fill up his pond with water that is readily accessible and cost-effective. The two typical types of water available are either municipal water (pretreated by the city) or well water (which is drawn from the ground and has had no pretreatment). This, unfortunately, brings unwanted chemicals and additives into the tank and varies significantly depending on the source.Read the full article
Filling in the Facts:The Importance of Auto-fills in Ponds and Water Gardens: A growing number of people are enjoying the rewarding hobby of tending ponds and water gardens to keep in touch with nature and enjoy tranquility and peaceful reflection. However, because these ponds are small eco-systems, they can pose challenges in many ways. Read the full article
Back to LifePonds wind up in distress when left neglected over a period of time. Owner illness, extensive travel or home sales cause the most neglect; at other times, new home buyers find that they now own a pond but have no idea how to keep it in shape. End the neglect with a quick and easy rehabilitation treatment. Read the full article
Give that Water some Air!!!Larger ponds benefit in several ways from aeration, which is not only about oxygen levels, but mixing and gas exchange. When aerating larger ponds, there are several approaches and different tools to use based on the pond's use and the challenges that need to be addressed. Why Aerate? Read the full article
Instant Pond!When people want to start water gardening, they usually turn to easy-to-install, widely available pre-formed ponds. Although pre-formed ponds install fairly easy, they could present somewhat of a challenge to keep filtered properly depending on where you live. The hotter the climate, the harder pre-formed ponds are to filter.Read the full article
Old Pond TalesOne of the most frustrating experiences for a pond owner can be receiving advice. Pond-keeping is a complex endeavor, but most advice seems to be brutally simple truths, dispensed with great authority. Drain annually! Just use salt! It’s easy to feel a bit confused and ignorant in the face of such elegantly simple rules. How could we have missed such obvious facts in our own research? Read the full article
How Many Koi Can I Have?This seemingly simple question is actually very complicated. Based on size and design, each ecosystem must have its own distinct fish load, water flow rates, oxygen levels, filtration system, the number of aquatic plants, the types of plants involved, feeding schedules, food types, the frequency of water changes and ratios ... and the list goes on.Read the full article
Big Payback with Eco-Friendly Lake & Pond ManagementPonds and lakes are a valuable natural resource. They add beauty to the landscape, provide recreation and are a habitat for fish and wildlife. A natural body of water is a complex biological, chemical and physical community. The quality of the water determines the health of the entire community and the aquatic organisms living within the system, from microscopic bacteria to the largest fish! Read the full article
Chemistry and Chemical Testing of Pond Water
By Noah Gillespie
Most people believe that if their pond’s water is clear, it is also clean and viable. However, this is not always the case.
It’s important to know that biological and chemical changes in water are often not visible. Only through proper testing can the true quality of water be determined. Poor water quality leads to stress and health problems that can be avoided with proper care. ...Continue Reading Here...
How to Diagnose, Locate and Effectively Repair Pond Leaks
By Josiah Crousore, Specialty Water Gardens
The leakers represent a serious issue that must be dealt with. They are eroding the chances of us ever being successful.
Thankfully, I’m not talking about politics. No, the “leakers” in our industry like to turn dirt into mud. Sometimes they cause certain plants to grow like crazy while the rest of the landscape wilts. They almost always result in puddles of standing water on the wrong side of a pond liner.
Leaks can be frustrating, elusive or incredibly annoying for a homeowner; in extreme cases, they can lead to serious problems that could result in harm to fish and damage to costly pumps and other equipment. ...Continue Reading Here...
Winter WarriorsWinter means different things to koi keepers in different regions, but whether it’s 60 or 16 degrees in your area during the winter months, nature still can wreak havoc on your koi pond. For koi hobbyists in places like Florida or California, winter doesn’t hinder their enjoyment of their yards or koi. Read the full article
Re-Education Needed in Aeration MarketOne of the biggest trends taking place is education. Teaching pond owners that aerators serve important functions in the summer and winter months will be key in the coming years to improve their water quality and reduce their overall maintenance. Read the full article
DIY Koi Ponds or Write the CheckInstalled properly, a koi pond can be the best investment that you've ever made in your quality of life and the value of your property, but building one requires a big commitment. Drawing up plans, selecting equipment and breaking ground could take weeks if you hire a professional or months if you decide to do it yourself. If you decide to take the plunge, you have some big decisions ahead. Read the full article
Large Pumps Might Mean Small Electric BillsThe economy has everyone tightening their belts, including pond hobbyists. With less money to spend on luxuries, owners want to maintain their investment as economically as possible. Manufacturers of large-scale pumps heard this call for economy and responded by developing pumps and promoting systems that run more efficiently. Read the full article
Pump Improvements Focus on EfficiencyThe keyword in pond pumps these days is efficiency, said Demi Fortuna, director of product information at Atlantic Water Gardens in Mantua, Ohio. "Although electric consumption always has been a consideration, it's becoming an overriding concern, and for good reason, "he said. Read the full article
Mechanical Filtration Sees EnhancementsPonds and aquariums bring magnificent aquatic life into the homes and backyards of millions. Along with providing brilliant-hues and graceful motion, the inhabitants bring high volumes of waste. Owners use various forms of filtration to mitigate the toxins produced by fish excretion and to protect pond life. Read the full article
Pond Pros Sell Essentials During Dormant SeasonFor weather-related businesses, winters can be long, brutal and difficult to survive. Some choose to close for winter while others stay open and provide overwintering products and services to their customers. Pond professionals said a few basic over wintering products prove essential to maintain a balanced ecosystem and healthy fish over winter. The primary overwintering products cited include pond nets, aerators, deicers and bacteria formulated for cold weather. Read the full article
Ponds can Reduce Stress: Living a Healthy LifestyleStress free life through a backyard pond - A Naturally Healthy Lifestyle: According to leading koi fish vets in the US today when koi are forced to live under stressful conditions, (poor water quality, overcrowding, under or overfeeding) the effectiveness of their immune system deteriorates which leaves them susceptible to pathogens in the water which cause disease. In other words the cause of most fish disease is STRESS! Read the full article
Expert Tips for Overwintering PondsIndustry experts, including David Cochran, an aquatic biologist and owner of White Path Water gardens in Ellijay, GA., said the first and most important step for overwintering ponds begins in the fall with leaf removal. He said the easiest method is stretching a net across the pond to catch the leaves before they fall into the water. Leaving plant debris in the pond over winter provides a starting place for bacterial infections in early spring, Cochran said. After all the leaves fall, he said to remove them and perform a thorough pond cleaning.Read the full article
Wintering Ponds with FishSuccessful water gardening takes some knowledge, but it also requires attention to details. When conditions are less than desirable, extra steps need to be taken to prevent potentially disastrous results. During extremely cold weather, the potential for many problems to occur becomes more prevalent and can separate those who have done their homework from those who have not. Read the full article
Pond Construction 101Location, Location, Location ... The first question to answer in pond construction is where to put the pond. When we look at nature, it makes sense that we build ponds in low-lying areas. After all, that is where we naturally find them! But in our world of beautiful yet artificial environments, this is a mistake. Read the full article
Rock and Boulder PlacementRemoving all signs of human influence can be tedious, detail-oriented work. This attention to detail must be maintained at all levels of the project - particularly with the selection and placement of large rock and boulder material - in order to reach full sensory satisfaction in naturalistic results. How critically important can rock and boulder placement be to the naturalistic look of our water features? Read the full article
A Ponds Patina: Protect Vital CrittersEvery pond is as unique as its owner. This uniqueness results from a huge number of variables, including climate, size and style of pond, fish, plants, human involvement, circulation, filters ... the list goes on. However, there is one aspect of all ponds that is the same. That is the pond's biofilm, or what I like to call A Pond's Patina (APP). Read the full article
Slow Down and GardenOur society seems to think multitasking and scurrying around at ever faster rates is the way to keep up with everything, see it all, experience it all, do it all. With the phone never far from the ear or fingertip, with drive through lanes for everything almost, folks zip to check off more things on their daily list. But the more important things in life can get ignored, squeezed out. Read the full article
Oxygen in PondsDissolved Oxygen Concentration (DOC) is the term given to describe the amount of oxygen that is dissolved in pond water. It is measured in terms of how much oxygen (by weight - mg) is dissolved in every litre of water. There are many factors that will affect DOC in a koi pond, some of which we can control, others we cannot, but can respond in a number of ways to guard against problems. Read the full article
How to Choose a Submersible Pond PumpFrom the gentle trickle of the smallest fountain to the heart-pounding roar of the largest waterfall, the success of any water feature is dependent upon the pond pump used in its construction. Many different types of pond pumps exist to help the pond industry professional create the perfect effect for each of their installations. Read the full article
Solve the Mystery of Your Leaking Pond LinerThere are few things in pond keeping that are as frustrating as dealing with a leaking pond liner. Days of hard work during installation are frustrated by a pond that loses water in spite of your best efforts. Fortunately, there are a few easy things to check that should narrow down exactly what is happening in your pond and get you back to enjoying your pond. Read the full article
Firestone Pondgard 45 Mil EPDM Pond Liner45 Mil EPDM Fish Safe Liner with a 20 Year Limited Manufacturers Warranty. This Top Grade Tear and Puncture Resistant 45 mil EPDM liner is perfect for adding a stream or for lining your waterfall. Never settle for PVC or anything less than 45 mil EPDM PondGard Liner. The PondGard Advantage is its ease of installation even in remote areas. No thermal welding or utilities are required for installation or repair. Read the full article
Pond Algae and How to Control ItAlgae forms in a pond when sunlight reacts with nutrients in the water. These nutrients are comprised of primarily Ammonia and Nitrate which you may recognize as the ingredients in fertilizer. These nutrients result from the breakdown of debris such as leaves, grass, and other windblown organic matter as well as from fish waste and uneaten fish food. Read the full article
Choosing a Pond SkimmerThe pond skimmer has served the water feature industry proudly for over 20 years. The workhorse of a traditional skimmer/filter system, the external pond skimmer is our first line of defense in our pond installations. While pumps and filtration systems have evolved considerably over the last 10-plus years, the pond skimmer has remained relatively unchanged — until recently. Read the full article
Winterize your Pond using a De-IcerThe use of a floating or submersible Pond deicer is one of the best ways you can winterize your pond. But what is a pond deicer, why do I need one, how do I use one, and how is it different from a pond heater?
What is a pond de icer? As the name implies, a pond de icer is a device used to prevent the buildup of ice in your pond in winter. There are two basic types of deicers. Both types keep a small hole free of ice in the surface of your pond to allow the escape of gases that could otherwise sicken or kill your fish. Read the full article
How to Properly use a Pond Water Test KitThose of us in the business understand that in spite of our best efforts a customer’s pond paradise may turn into a nightmare if they do not perform some basic maintenance tasks. To make sure our customers’ ponds remain a welcome retreat from an otherwise stressful world we educate them about proper feeding amounts, how to flush the filter or rinse the pads, how to keep away predators, proper circulation, and basic plant and fish care tips. Read the full article
How to Choose an External Pond PumpThe external pond pump is an invaluable tool for our trade and one that is often overlooked as an installation option. What is an external pond pump? An external pond pump is one that sits outside of (or external to) the pond itself. Applications for these pumps include, but are not limited to, waterfalls, pulling from bottom drains, formal fountains, pond circulation, or any situation where a submersible pump is not practical or attractive. Read the full article
Pros Report Advances in Biological EngineeringThe pond industry continues to refine its techniques for enabling efficient and effective biofiltration. As ponds and water gardens are designed to mimic nature, so are the water quality maintenance processes. In nature, microscopic organisms, or beneficial bacteria, help remove waste from the water and drive the natural nitrogen cycle. Pond professionals report looking to replicate this vital process in their projects. Read the full article
Step by Step Pond Building InstructionsThis is probably the most important step in building your pond. You will be investing heavily into your pond building, choose a wise place to do so. Pick a place in your backyard that is close to a seating area such as your deck. You can also select an area in your yard that has high visibility through a window of your home. Try also selecting a place where you will be able to enjoy you pond at night as well as the daytime. Read the full article
Backyard Water Gardening ArticleYour pond can be made in a variety of different styles. Among the most popular is the fish pond. Installation of a fish pond can be very rewarding as you begin with a pond you create yourself, add young fish into the ecosystem, and then reap years of enjoyment as you watch them grow. Read the full article
3 Key Design Factors for Bog FiltrationPond designers and builders agree that the goal of bog filtration, as with any filtration system, is clean, healthy water. Whether including it as the primary or supplemental filtration system on a new or remodeled pond, they said three key design factors remain the same. Read the full article
Pros Approach UV Installation DifferentlyIndustry professionals laud ultraviolet filtration as a powerful tool in the fight against green water, especially in ponds where water clarity is challenged by common problems such as imbalanced ecosystems or filters that are too small for the size of the pond. Read the full article