Showing posts with label Pond. Show all posts
Showing posts with label Pond. Show all posts


Your KOI POND After The Storm

English: Garden pond Česky: Zahradní jezírko
Garden pond (Photo credit: Wikipedia)
First off, take time to breathe. Your pride and joys are probably fine. They may be somewhat traumatized by the whole experience, but that would be any pet caught in unusual situations. Unless extreme damage was done, their health probably is not an issue, however, their home may be in need of some repairs.

You may have been completely prepared for the storm, or the storm may have taken you by complete surprise. Whatever the case may be, you must jump into action as soon as you physically can to ensure that no further damage is done to your pond.

First, you must undo all of your storm precautions to survey the possible damage.

If you netted your pond, clear as much debris off the net as possible and remove the netting. Once you removed the netting you will be able to survey the damage and the condition that your fish are in. If high waters were expected and your sandbagged the area around your pond, as long as the water level is normal, remove all sandbags so that you can easily access your pond. Do not get discouraged if things seem out of place, and it may not be as bad as it originally looks.

Once you have removed all netting and other precautions, take the time to look at the area. If any debris is present, remove it by skimming and netting. If plants or decorations are uprooted or out of place, replace them to their rightful area.

If you find major damage to your pond, it is important to remove your Koi as soon as possible. Proper bagging and transporting techniques may be needed if the damage is done will take a large amount of time to fix, but there are several temporary options available if the damage can be fixed quickly. You may want to consider using a children’s pool to house your Koi. If nothing is available at the time, get into contact with your local pet store or zoo, as they may have a program available to help you house your Koi until maintenance can be done.

Once you have decided that only small repairs are needed, then you must focus on the water quality. You water may seem cloudy or murky due to the storm and the amount of extra water from rainfall. If the storm lasted for a long amount of time, you may be facing ammonia issues as well.

Test your water for Nitrates. If Nitrates are present, add the proper amount of salt to the water. Typically you would add 3/4 to one pound of salt per 100 gallons of water. However, if your fish are especially shocked by the situation, or seem to have sustained any type of injuries, it may be a good idea to add more. If you have plants in your pond, it may be a good idea to remove them before adding the salt into the water. Your fish should be the most important issue at this point, not your plants.

If you are having KH issues (especially if it is below 100) you will want to add baking soda to your pond. Typically you can add 1 cup of unpacked baking soda per 1000 gallons of water. This will protect your pond from a future pH crash.



English: Koi fish in the pond at the Gibraltar...
Koi fish in the pond at the Gibraltar Botanic Gardens. (Photo credit: Wikipedia)
Summer is considered one of the best and more vibrant times for your Koi pond. 

Temperatures are beautiful, and you are more able to enjoy your pond then during the cold Winter months. However, by no means, should your maintenance drop during the summer months. Remembering a few things during the summer months will ensure that your pond stays beautiful and lively.

Higher Temperatures Cause Less Oxygen 

During the summer months, the oxygen level in your pond actually decreases. Proper precautions should be taken, especially if you live in an area where temperatures stay high for the majority of the year. If you witness your Koi hanging out towards the top of the water, and they seem to be gasping for air, this may be a good indication that your pond does not have a high enough concentration of Oxygen.

One way to keep oxygen moving in your water is by installing water features such as waterfalls and fountains. The more the water is moving, the more Oxygen is available to your Koi.  

If water features are not available, frequent water changes will give your fish the amount of Oxygen they need to survive. 

Watch For Evaporation

Higher heat will cause your water to evaporate at a much higher rate. Pay close attention to your water levels and do adjustments as necessary. Remember, you must remove all chlorine from the water you add. 

Summertime is Parasite Season

Not unlike other situations in life, heat brings on potential parasites and illness. The majority of parasites are not seeable by the naked eye, so instead, you must watch your Koi for signs of illness.

You may notice strange behaviors in your fish such as rubbing against objects, scratching, shaking, or shivering. Each symptom could indicate a different type of illness, so it is important to watch closely.

It is especially important to pay attention to your Koi if they start developing noticeable spots or changes on their body. They may also knock fins off. 

If any type of change is noticed, contact your local vet, pet store, or Koi dealer as soon as possible. While some parasites will cause little damage, some illnesses such as KHV or Koi Herpes Virus have a high mortality rate and should be treated as soon as possible.

Feeding Your Koi

To remain healthy during the summer, your fish will need food high in the types of nutrients that they need. During the summer you should feed your fish food that is low in protein at least one to three times a day. If your fish still seem hungry after feeding, you may want to increase feeding slightly.

Feeding your Koi small amounts of food at a time will prevent food from spoiling. If you feed in larger amounts, some food may remain uneaten, and it can spoil in a very short amount of time.  Fish will only eat what they need to survive and will leave the rest. Spoiled food can cause water quality issues if close attention is not paid.

Feeding your Koi actually causes less Oxygen content in the water. During the summer this can especially be an issue, as Oxygen levels deplete in high temperatures. You can remedy this by feeding your fish in the cooler hours of the day.

Summer presents a special time to hand feed your Koi. Children are out of school, and the weather is usually perfect for being outside. Get the kids involved as they will remember it for years to come.



Our koi pond and back yard, Spring 2015
Photo  by corsi photo 

Recently, one of the most popular backyard designs is adding a water pond or a fish pond to the yard. These projects, however, can only be achieved in a sprawling and huge yard that has walkways and large areas.

But if you are really certain to have your own fish pond and yet you do not have a large backyard, there are design ideas that can be incorporated to hopefully place your pond in it without having to take up too much space and dominate your yard.

Let your pond serve as the focal point of your backyard. Place it in the middle or in one corner of the yard if you have a small space. Make it appealing to the people walking around the house.


If you wish to place it in the corner part of the yard, raise the pond a little higher so that the fish will seem like a surprise to the visitors. But if you want to place it in the center, it is best if you place the pond at ground level or a little above it.

Fish Types

Make sure that the fish you put inside is colorful and lively to attract attention. Watching the fishes swim around every day can also serve to be therapeutic. But if you want to maintain a small pond, do not place large fishes such as the Japanese Koi. They may not live long in this kind of environment and they are also extremely expensive. Goldfish are compatible with the size of your pond, however, their longevity might not be a guaranteed in an outdoor pond.


Think how much you really want an outdoor pond and how you can maintain and build it depending on your preferences. You might find that maintaining an indoor aquarium is difficult enough, how much more an outdoor pond.

Consider the climate of your place. Water ponds and fish ponds are most applicable in tropical weather because of the advantage of the sun all year round. Some aquatic plants need to be exposed to the sun to grow. The plants and fishes may die if you let them stay in the pond during winter time. it is best to transfer them to an indoor tank if the weather is not applicable.

A fish pond in your own backyard only tells an individual how much energy, time, and money you are willing to devote to the beautification of your backyard. It does not matter how large or how small it is, it just goes to show that you appreciate beautiful things. You will not only impress a lot of people but yourself as well. A backyard fish pond brings a luxurious and relaxing feeling to the place.

In order to make your fish pond more appealing, decorate its surroundings. Landscaping the place will attract frogs and birds which can add to the overall natural feeling. If you cannot afford landscaping projects, hanging plants and flowering bushes will do. This will produce a great ambiance for your visitors and guests.

Having a fish pond is not a go-get-it-and-have-it project. You have to maintain and preserve its beauty time and again. Make sure to add water to it periodically. It is also important that you get rid of fallen leaves as this will cause decay and unpleasant appearance.

Lastly, consult your local pond professionals before building a pond yourself. Do not hesitate to ask questions as this will benefit the inhabitants of the pond. 



English: Floating lilies, the sun light showin...
Floating lilies, the sunlight showing its delicate petals structure and waxed leaves adapted for floating. (Photo credit: Wikipedia)
Ponds could not be more exciting for the backyard gardener. Flowing water and the excitement of enjoying a balanced aquatic ecosystem is unmatched by traditional gardening. A key piece to pond care includes water plants. The purpose of this article is to introduce water plant care to the pond hobbyist.

The “season” for most water plants along the Central Coast is spring. Starting in March, you’ll begin to see water plants become available at local nurseries. This is also the time when you’ll need to prepare your pond for the coming “push” of growth. This begins with the removal of unwanted “trash” and “rotting” plant material. In some cases, some plants will be ready for “dividing.” You’ll need to prepare for new additions to your pond as well. Thinning out floating plants by removing larger, older material is a good idea; crowded individuals display less flowering and stringy, non-energetic growth.

Feeding your aquatic landscape is the next important step in care and maintenance. Aquatic plants have all the same nutrient requirements as the plants you’ll find in your garden. Fortunately quite a bit of nutrient required by water plants are met with ambient water soluble materials and fish wastes. That said, I encourage every hobbyist to apply fertilizer spikes or “tablet” slow-release fertilizers to their plants in the spring.

It is worth touching on pests and disease of water plants as well. Fortunately, water plants don’t have nearly the number of problems our landscape plants face. The best solution is to avoid buying or collecting diseased specimens. Inspecting and quarantining new introductions and relying on a reputable dealer is your safest bet.

Fungus problems tend to be the most significant issue facing water plants. There are several “plant dips” and treatments that will help to control fungus. The most common baths incorporate either the strong oxidant, potassium permanganate or aluminum sulfate. Concentrations and instructions for their use are enclosed with their packaging. but basically a solution is prepared and the new plant material emerged for several minutes. The plants are subsequently rinsed and placed. If you do nothing else with new arrivals, be sure to look them over carefully, trim off dead/dying material, scrape away snail and insect eggs and hose off vigorously before putting them in your pond.

When it comes to pests, there are a few to mention. Aphids can be a real challenge given that their piercing and sucking of plants above water (especially lilies) can cause trouble. Watch for the appearance of winged females in the spring when they descend from certain species of nearby trees. If you act quickly, small populations of their offspring may be washed off by a strong blast of water. There some species of flies and beetles that also prey on aquatic plants. In most cases, they can be treated by removing the affected parts of the plants.

Fish can also be a problem for water plants. Many folks are recommended to plant directly into planting baskets or in areas where fish cannot nibble at roots and foliage. There are certain varieties of plants that fish will not even touch. Water plants offer a really exciting complement to a pond ecosystem. With the right care, feeding and maintenance, your pond will exceed your wildest dreams and bring years of beauty and enjoyment.

Steve McShane is Founder, Owner and General Manager of McShane’s Nursery & Landscape Supply. Steve is a Soil Science Graduate from Cal Poly, San Luis Obispo and has his MBA from Santa Clara University.

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