If you’ve taken the bold step to construct and install your garden pond you might think the hard work is done. Unfortunately, just like a pet, a pond is not just for Christmas and requires care and attention all year round. There are many benefits to regularly maintaining your pond and looking after it well, as it will help make it a serene space for its ecosystem to grow and will create a peaceful space for you and your family to share – especially in the summertime. At Pond Planet we want to make maintaining your pond as easy and stress free as possible which is why we’ve written this guide to pond maintenance, so we can kit you out with both the knowledge as well as pond maintenance products that will get your pond at its best.
Why should I maintain my pond?
Maintaining your pond is crucial for keeping the water healthy for both the plants and fish that populate it. Without regular care, your pond will become cluttered with debris which will harbour dirt and decay. If you’ve taken the plunge to install a pond then it’s Important that you keep it a clean and healthy space to grow the life that inhabits it and is attracted to it.
How often should I maintain my pond?
If you are serious about keeping your pond in its best shape then regular maintenance is crucial, otherwise you will have an unhealthy body of water that can’t home fish and doesn’t look very nice either! Sometimes it is best to judge for yourself on when your pond needs a good clear out; depending on where it’s situated will mean that the amount of leaves, dirt and debris can be different.
We strongly encourage at the very least a seasonal pond clean, to get rid of the previous seasons dirt and prepare for the new.
Tips for maintaining your pond:
Clean pond regularly
Regularly cleaning your pond doesn’t have to be an extreme clean out every time. Instead, keeping on top of the visible debris with different sized pond nets, or with the right pond skimmer, little and often can have a hugely positive effect. Leaves are your pond’s nemesis, as the toxic gases they release when decaying become dangerous for your pond’s ecosystem, so getting rid of them correctly is vital for the health of your pond. It is also really important to remove the sludge that builds up on your pond as well as the dirt. Using a pond vac to remove this effectively can make cleaning out your pond much less time consuming!
Choose proper filtration
The right pond filter is crucial for proper pond maintenance. There are a few different things you have to consider to choose the correct filter for your pond. Not only must you consider the volume of your pond, but also what type of aquatic life you want to inhabit it with. This is important to consider because the fish’s waste will differ, depending on the type it is. For example, if you are planning on keeping normal fish then you only need to double the volume when thinking about how much your filter needs to handle. Whereas, if you are planning on keeping Koi fish this figure needs to be quadrupled – as they produce much more waste!
So, what type of filters can you choose from?
Pressurised filters – Ideal for smaller sized ponds, pressurised filters are compact discrete filters that can be located pretty much anywhere around your pond. They efficiently remove dissolved waste, allow water to run uphill and are easier to clean.
UV Filters – Most filters have an integral UVC but if this isn’t the case and if you’re planning on having a high population of fish in your pond then it would be useful to have a UV filter. When water is pumped through an Ultra Violet Clarifier the high levels of ultraviolet light kill the algae cells and flocculate the particles to allow the filter to remove them and help make your water crystal clear! Check out our range of UV clarifiers.
Box filters – These filters are suited for all sizes of ponds and dependant on the model contain a range of mechanical and biological filter media. The mechanical media such as brushes and foam will remove debris and waste from the water whilst the biologcal media will colonise with beneficial bacteria, to keep the water healthy for the ponds inhabitants.
Drum filters – For those who want to keep Japanese Koi fish, our range of drum filters are built as a high quality way to approach the full filtration process, all in one place! These self cleaning filters complete with moving bed chambers are the pinnacle of pond filtration.
Choose right pump for pond
To make sure that your pond is filtered properly it usually means there needs to be some effective teamwork between the filter you choose and its matching pump. The pump is designed to circulate and aerate water whilst pushing it through whatever filter system you have chosen for your pond. Depending on the volume of your pond will depend on the pump you might choose.
We have a wide range of pond pumps available at Pond Planet from the OASE Aquarius Eco Expert 44000, that is designed to handle huge water flow rates whilst still being eco-friendly, down to the Pontec PondoMax Eco 2500 that handles a smaller capacity, but still works to filter your pond effectively.
Maintain a healthy fish population
Regardless of the size of your pond or its location a key way to care properly for it is to make sure your cater well for the size of fish population you’ve chosen to home. A well balanced population is key for ensuring you have a healthy, thriving ecosystem. Always consider the capacity of your pond when deciding on the number of fish (and their size) you want to live in it.
Maintain pump, filter, lines & fountains
Choosing the correct parts of your pond is, again, just the first step! Maintaining the health of your pond’s components is vital in keeping it healthy all the time. Dedicating time to unclogging your filters, cleaning your pumps and removing limescale from your fountains will help your pond keep running properly and helps to avoid malfunctions.
Troubleshoot & repair any leaks
If your pond water levels are dropping thick and fast there’s a good chance you have a leak that has to be tended to quickly. Whether it’s caused by the accessories or in the ponds foundation you must locate the leak and fix it to avoid any damage to the ecosystem you’ve worked so hard to keep healthy!
Maintain right water level
Low water levels reduce the swim space available for the ponds inhabitants and in extreme cases can cause reduced oxygen levels for both the fish and wildlife. On top of this a there is nothing more unsightly than a half filled pond. This means that you need to top up your pond water level if you see it dropping. This can be performed automatically using a water top up system for ease. Always use a suitable tap water treatment when topping up your pond to make sure the water is safe for fish and other other inhabitants.
Make it well-aerated
Well-aerated water will keep your pond in a much healthier state; reducing the amount of algae that grows and stopping it from smelling! Your aquatic life will also thrive in well-aerated water as it increases their oxygen intake and will increase their growth. An effective way to keep your pond aerated would be using an air pump or even through installing a feature like a waterfall or fountain. The improved air movement within the water will keep it aerated and create the right culture for your ecosystem to grow!
Keep the water chemistry optimum
Decaying leaves, plants or dirt can all alter the water chemistry of your pond and infiltrate it with toxins, which can cause a lot of problems for your ecosystem. This is why it is so important to keep regularly monitoring it and testing it, which you can do using one of our wide range of pond test kits. If there is something a bit incorrect when you test your pond, then we have a range of pond treatments that can get it back to top health!
Any time that you dedicate to caring and maintaining your pond will be worth it when you have your mirage-like pond that homes healthy fish and is a beautiful addition to your garden.