Table of contents:
- Garden pond: care in spring
- Garden pond: care in summer
- Garden pond: care in autumn
- Garden pond: care in winter
- Clean the pond's filter system properly
- Frequently asked questions about garden ponds
- Important terms related to the garden pond
Video: Garden pond - tips for care
Proper care of a garden pond is extremely important to maintain its biological balance all year round. Read here what you should do to ensure that the quality of the water remains optimal and that algae don't stand a chance.
Proper maintenance of a garden pond takes some time and patience, but it should definitely be done regularly. Once the pond is very old, often only an entire renovation can achieve the desired effect. Basically, the pond should never be exposed to direct sunlight, because in summer it would warm it up too much. When creating the garden pond, make sure that it is at least partially in the shade.
The amount of water also plays an important role, so the following rule of thumb applies: the greater the amount of water, the more stable the ecological balance. A size of 10 to 15 square meters and a depth of 100 centimeters are good conditions for a garden pond. When planning the shallow water zone, you should not plan it too small, because the swamp plants growing in it act like a natural sewage treatment plant.
Pond maintenance is primarily about continuously withdrawing nutrients from the garden pond and adding no other nutrients from the outside.
Garden pond: care in spring
In spring, the pond must be cleaned thoroughly and checked for possible damage, for example due to ice. However, it is advisable to only start cleaning from a water temperature of around 12 degrees Celsius. Remove dead plant parts and leaves and regularly fish for pollen and petals during flowering. With a sludge sucker you can suck up digested sludge from the bottom of the pond. This contains a lot of nutrients and otherwise promotes the formation of algae.
If you want, you can add the sludge to the compost or use it as an organic fertilizer for hedges or fruit trees. Before you put the pond pumps back into operation, they must be checked for damage and cleanliness. With UVC pond clarifiers, the old UVC lamp should be replaced with a new one. The filter must also be operated again. It is important not to switch it off again in between, because then no important microorganisms can settle in the filter system.
A pond enhances every garden and invites you to escape everyday stress.
Photo: epr / Söll
Garden pond: care in summer
A regular check of the water is especially important in summer, because the sun's rays and the warm temperatures promote the growth of the algae. Check the quality of the water, for example with a test stick or a droplet test. The following values are optimal and a sign of the correct water values.
Nitrite (NO2): 0 mg / l (at 0.02 mg / l toxic to fish)
Nitrate (NO3): less than 50 mg / l
Carbon hardness (KH): 5 to 15 dH
Total hardness (GH): 5 to 15 dH
Also make up for water loss. Even in summer, fast-growing plants have to be cut back regularly, pond sludge suctioned off and algae fished out. If you have fish in your pond, they must have sufficient oxygen available. Make sure that the water temperature never rises above 22 degrees Celsius.
Garden pond: care in autumn
In autumn the temperatures become cooler again and the garden pond has to be prepared for the coming time. Leaves should be fished out regularly. If there is a tree near your garden pond, it is advisable to stretch a leaf protection net in the form of a saddle roof over the pond. So the leaves do not collect in the middle of the net, but slide off to the side. It is important in autumn to remove pond technology such as pumps and filters from the pond, to clean them and to store them in a frost-free environment, ideally in a bucket of water. Also, don't forget to drain water from the hoses.
If you have hardy plants in your pond, you need to take them out and let them overwinter in a protected and frost-free place. In addition, the remaining plants such as grass and reeds can be bound together and overgrown specimens can be eliminated. As soon as the water temperature drops below 12 degrees Celsius, the feeding of the fish must be stopped.
Kois in the pond.
Photo: Elenathewise / Fotolia
Garden pond: care in winter
Although little happens at the garden pond in winter, some measures still need to be taken. If it snows regularly in your region, you should remove snow from the foliage protection net. Once the pond has frozen over, the snow must also be removed from the surface so that some light can reach the water. Some fish have no problem overwintering in the garden pond. However, if your garden pond is not at least one meter deep, it is advisable to remove the animals. Amphibians dig into the silt of the pond and tolerate freezing for a short time. Never punch a hole in the ice!
Clean the pond's filter system properly
If you have a garden pond, don't forget to clean the filter system regularly. Some models specify when the best time for cleaning is. In the filter chamber there are usually several filter sponges that filter out dirt particles and bind nutrients and toxins. In turn, these filter sponges are home to bacteria that are extremely important for filtering. Therefore, you should never rinse the sponges with clear water, but only wring them out by hand. Suspended matter that collects at the bottom of the filter chamber is usually discharged through a valve.
Evaporated water in the garden pond can be replaced with tap water - but slowly so that the temperature does not cool down too quickly.
Frequently asked questions about garden ponds
Should the pond water be completely changed when algae grow?
No! Because tap water contains nutrients that promote algae growth. Algae are normal in a young pond and disappear on their own as soon as the nutrients in the water have been used up. In an older pond, nutrients should be removed from the water by removing part of the sediment and shading it at the same time, for example by using floating plants.
I used ten goldfish in my pond (eight square meters) because I thought they kept the water clean. But it is cloudy
Fish can only be kept in a small pond with the help of pond pumps and filters. They do not purify the water, but enrich it with their droppings.
The goldfish are doing well in my pond. Although my garden is on the edge of a meadow, unfortunately no frog has appeared. Why is that?
Amphibians are dependent on a natural food supply that only gradually develops in a pond. If you use fish immediately, this development is not possible. In addition, most fish do not stop at amphibian spawning. If you do not want to do without both, create a second pond in which there are no fish.
Is autumn leaves harmful to the pond?
Small amounts don't hurt. Larger amounts lead to a quick accumulation of silt. You can keep the foliage out with a foliage protection net stretched over the pond.
Is rainwater harmful to the pond?
No, the pond also has to cope with the falling rain. The water from the roof should be drained into the sewage system at the beginning of the downpour (there are appropriate devices) so that deposits are washed away.
Can you replace evaporated water with tap water?
Yes. Let it in slowly and intermittently so that the pond water does not cool down too quickly.
Tall trees grow near our planned pond. Can their roots destroy the film?
PVC films are root-resistant. But there are also special root protection foils that can be used like pond foils.
How can I seal a concrete pool?
You can line it with pond liner (there are profile rails for attachment to the pool edge). Or you mix waterproof cement and sand in a ratio of 1: 2, then add enough water that the mortar can spread easily and fill the crack with it. Over it comes a waterproof coat of synthetic resin.
How do I master the duckweed?
The duckweed loves nutrient-rich water. In this way it also deprives the algae of food. You can reduce the nutrient content of the pond by skimming off the duckweed and clearing some of the silt from the bottom of the pond.
Do fish need to be wintered in an aquarium?
No, the pond must be at least one meter deep at one point.
If you prevent algae, you can calmly come to the garden season. The water in the pond is then clear to the bottom.
Photo: epr / Söll
Important terms related to the garden pond
The following definitions and explanations of terms should help you to find your way around garden pond maintenance.
Single-celled aquatic plants that often live together in bodies of water (cotton wool or thread algae). Your growth is promoted by lime and nutrient-rich warm water. They generate oxygen in sunlight, but consume it in the dark.
Collective term for small animals that need both water and certain parts of the landscape, often far from it, to live. They all spawn in the water. Many of them spend the winter on the bottom of the water. Amphibians include frogs, toads, toads, newts and salamanders.
Habitat of plants and animals, which depends on the given physical and chemical environmental conditions.
Balance between nutrient suppliers (dead plants and animals) and nutrient consumers (growing plants, herbivorous and carnivorous animals). If there are no more nutrients than can be absorbed, there is a biological balance. This also means that neither an animal nor a plant species can reproduce so strongly that it suppresses or displaces other species.
German degrees of hardness (° dH)
Calcium and magnesium salts dissolved in water. The higher the salinity, the harder the water. Soft water has a total hardness of 4 to 7, hard water of 18 to 30 ° dH.
In addition to crayfish and pond crabs, water lice and so-called water fleas, which also provide food for fish.
Extension of a watercourse in which the flowing water comes to rest or still water forms a small pond in which plants and animals can live.
Smallest creatures that can only be seen under the microscope and that play a key role in the decomposition of dead plant and animal substances and thus in the development of nutrients for the plants.
A branch of biology that deals with the relationships of living beings with each other and with their environment.
(Latin: potentia Hydrogenii). The unit of measure for the acidity of soil and water. The pH value depends on the lime content. Acidic water has a pH of 4, basic (alkaline) water of 8 and more. The ideal pH value for water gardens is around the neutral point of 7, but can rise to 10 with the different temperatures during the day.
(Polyvenyl chloride) is the material that is used in connection with plasticizers to make pond liner. The plasticizers contained therein must not be toxic with regard to pond life.
Floating leaf plants
These plants shade the pond with their leaves floating on the water, but are connected by roots to the pond floor from which they take their food.
These plants float on the water and feed on them. They only establish a root connection to the ground in exceptional cases. You can completely cover and shade a pond, as well as absorb excess nutrients from the water. Floating leaf and floating plants also prevent algae growth.
Plants that are constantly submerged are called submerged alive. They release oxygen, process excess nutrients and provide shelter for small animals and fish.
Small body of water that dries out occasionally over the course of a summer. Plants can be found here that grow both in moist soil and in shallow water. Insects and amphibians also like to take up this habitat.
Tipping over (eutrophy)
The cause is always an excessive accumulation of nutrients in the pond. The result is an excessive growth of algae, which in turn causes a strong deprivation of oxygen. Eventually, the algae also die and neither plants nor animals can live in the pond.