Pond Start Up

Pond Start Up in Spring

As spring approaches and the ice on your pond begins to thaw, take some time to do a walk around your pond to see if there are any repairs that may need to be done before you get your pond running for the new season.

-          Is there any damage to the hosing or liner?

-          Have any of the rocks shifted over winter?

Once the water temperature has reached 32°F (0°C) or over, the following Pond Start Up tasks can be performed:

Pond Start Up Step By Step Process

 

Pond Start Up Step 1:

Remove Netting: Remove any Pond Netting that may have been placed over the ponds surface to prevent leaves from dropping in or to discourage predators over winter.

[caption id="attachment_308" align="alignnone" width="150"] Pond Start Up Protective Pond Netting [/caption]

Pond Start Up Step 2:

Add Cold Water Beneficial Bacteria: You can begin adding Cold Water Beneficial Bacteria which can be added at any temperature above 32°F (0°C). This will work to fast track both cleaning and balancing your pond system. You may also soak your filter media with beneficial bacteria to give it a head start.

[caption id="attachment_309" align="alignnone" width="150"] Pond Start Up Cold Water Beneficial Bacteria [/caption]

Pond Start Up Step 3:

Remove Pond Heater: If your fish have been over-wintered in the pond (zone 6 or below, one area of your pond should be a minimum of 42-48” deep) you can now remove and store the Pond Heater; however, be sure that the surface of your pond will not freeze over entirely once you remove the heater.

[caption id="attachment_312" align="alignnone" width="150"] Pond Start Up 300w Pond Heater [/caption]

Once the water temperature has reached 50°F (10°C) the following tasks can be performed:

Pond Start Up Step 1:

Remove Debris: Use a Skimming Net to slowly skim the bottom of the pond for any debris that may have settled over winter (i.e. leaves and sludge). Try not to disturb the fish by stirring up the pond too much, as they are at a delicate stage in the spring.

[caption id="attachment_315" align="alignnone" width="217"] Pond Start Up Skimming Net [/caption]

Pond Start Up Step 2:

Weekly Beneficial Bacteria: Continue adding liquid beneficial bacteria weekly to your pond system.

[caption id="attachment_680" align="alignnone" width="157"] Pond Start Up Beneficial Bacteria [/caption]

Pond Start Up Step 3:

Re-introduce Filters and Pumps: Filters (Pressurized Filters/Gravity fed Filters, UVs) and pumps (Solids Handling/Skimmer Pumps) can be re-introduced into the pond. Ensure they are working properly and cleaned out prior to installing (easier to have them cleaned prior to storing)

[caption id="attachment_608" align="alignnone" width="288"] Pond Start Up Skimmer Pump [/caption]

Pond Start Up Step 4:

Move Aeration: Aeration can be moved from the ledges or midway points of your pond to the deeper areas.

[caption id="attachment_681" align="alignnone" width="157"] Pond Start Up Aeration Kit [/caption]

Pond Start Up Step 5:

Fertilize Plants: Lilies can be brought up to the more shallow areas of the pond to kick start their growth (this is not mandatory). Marginals can be re-potted if necessary. All plants can be fertilized at this time.

[caption id="attachment_320" align="alignnone" width="111"] Pond Start Up Plant Fertilizer Pond Spikes [/caption]

Pond Start Up Step 6:

Begin Feeding Fish: Begin feeding fish again once your water temperature has reached a consistent 50°F (10°C). Be sure not to feed fish prior to this, as they are unable to digest the food in cooler temperatures. Use a Spring/Autumn Food or cold water food that is high in spirulina and wheat germ (easily digested). Only feed fish what they are able to consume in a time period of 2 minutes.

[caption id="attachment_393" align="alignnone" width="370"] Pond Start Up Fish Food [/caption]

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