Maintaining a pond through cold weather is a bit different than maintaining one through the warmer months. There are several critical things that you need to do to make sure that your pond maintains its beauty and your pond equipment continues to run. Follow these tips to properly take care of your pond this winter.
Leaving A Pond Running During Winter Months
Most people that have Koi ponds and aquatic plants choose to keep their pond running throughout the winter. Leaving a pond running can create a beautiful backdrop against a fresh winter snowfall. There are several things that pond owners need to remember to properly maintain their pond.
Pay Attention To The Water Level
Make sure to keep a close eye on your water level, especially if you are trying to keep fish alive. Water naturally evaporates and tends to evaporate faster during colder months. You'll need to top off your pond at least once throughout the winter, if not more.
Prevent The Pond From Freezing
It's important to take precautions against your pond freezing over throughout the winter. A pond aerator can help prevent ice from forming by causing constant motion in the water, making it more difficult for it to freeze. Pond aerators that are surface aerators are a great option for this.
A pond de-icer, also known as a pond heater, is another wonderful option. These are small circular devices that often have a built-in thermometer. They kick on once the temperature of the water reaches a certain temperature, such as freezing temperature. Then, they produce heat to prevent the entire pond from freezing over.
The small circular hole that pond heaters create helps harmful gasses escape from the pond to ensure that your pond has a high water quality level. Pond de-icers are also referred to as a floating de-icer.
Pick Up An Extra Pond Pump
You're more likely to experience problems with equipment during the winter months. If your pump fails, your pond can freeze over in a matter of hours. That is why it's a great idea to have a spare pump if you plan on operating your garden pond through the winter.
Remove Tropical Fish And Plants
Tropical fish and plants need to be inside well before the colder days of winter hit. As soon as you see the first frost, start to move all of your tropical aquatic life indoors to make sure that they survive.
Take Care Of Leaves And Debris Before Winter
Maintaining your pond throughout fall weather is especially important to prevent future problems. Dead leaves and debris from both trees and aquatic plants are bound to fall into your garden pond.
If this is not removed in a timely manner, it can create a harmful environment for your finned friends. Those of you that have a shallow pond will notice that you have brown water and more algae due to the toxic environment.
Whether you have fish or not, a part of maintaining your beautiful backyard pond includes removing leaves and debris.
Install Pond Netting
Pond nets are a great way to prevent leaves from getting into your pond in the first place. These nets extend over the top of the pond to catch leaves. Then, you simply have to clean the net.
Scoop Out Leaves And Debris
A long-handled pond net can be used to remove leaves and debris that make it through your pond net. If you do not use a pond net, having a pond shovel is a must to keep your shallow pond clean.
Trim Aquatic Plants
Prevent aquatic plants from contributing to debris in your larger pond by making sure that you keep them properly trimmed. Using small scissors, trim back leaves as they turn yellow and brown. Don't forget to trim your floating plants too.
Cold Water Beneficial Bacteria
As you prepare a pond for winter, it's important to prepare your pond habitat for the changes that come with cold weather. As the temperature of the pond water drops, several strains of beneficial bacteria will also die because they cannot survive in cold temperatures. Picking up some cold water beneficial bacteria is necessary for maintaining your pond throughout the winter.
Provides The Same Benefits As Other Beneficial Bacteria
Cold water beneficial bacteria help combat algae, break down waste from fish, and can provide you with the clear, clean water that you love.
Designed To Thrive In Cold Water Temperatures
Because cold water bacteria products only contain bacteria that will survive in colder temperatures, you don't have to worry about it dying off in the middle of winter. However, you do need to remember to put warm water beneficial bacteria in your pond again once the temperatures outside start to rise.
Check Your Pond Daily
Throughout winter it is important to keep an eye on your pond to keep your pond safe. Check the level of pond ice daily to ensure that it is not completely freezing over. If temperatures fall below freezing, check your pump twice daily to make sure that it has not failed. Test the water quality to make sure that you are keeping pond water clean. Regular pond maintenance is a very important part of winter pond care.
Maintaining your pond throughout the winter requires preparing your pond by removing dead foliage and tropical aquatic life. It involves taking the extra steps necessary to ensure that your pond has wonderful water quality and is maintained through colder months, such as picking up a backup pond pump and floating de-icer.