Friday, May 26, 2006
52 Tips for Selecting a Pond kit, Pond Construction and Maintenance(9)
15. What pond shapes of pond are best?
Simple pond designs are easiest to build. When using a liner for a pond, we are taking a flat object and getting it to conform to an irregular hole-in-the-ground. If the pond were bowl shaped, we can fold the excess liner so it fits into the hole snuggly with out any tension on the liner. If we have a complicated design, it is necessary to pull the liner down so there is enough material to fit into some of the recesses.
For more information about Pond and Fountain Pros, please visit our websit atPond and Fountain Pros.
Monday, May 22, 2006
52 Tips for Selecting a Pond kit, Pond Construction and Maintenance(8)
BACTERIUM & CHEMICALS
14. Why do we want to add bacterium? What is the bacterium anyway?
Almost any pond kit will have a combination of bacterium and enzymes included in it. Since we are trying to control the algae and make the water safe for the fish it is important what bacteria you use. Exact formulas are trade secrets. However, something to look for if you can find it is to compare the count in millions per gram. The powder you see is often cheese whey to support the bacterium. I recommend you shop around when you need to replace the bacteria.
As the bacterium multiply they consume nutrients in the water. If they did not, the nutrients would build up and become toxic to the fish. Although the bacteria grow on every surface in the pond, we colonize the bacterium in a biological filter so we can wash the filter and conveniently remove the nutrients from the water.
Bacteria are dependent upon nutrients, sunlight and temperature. Controlling any or all of these factors will help us limit the algae. As water temperature retreats into the 50s in the fall, bacteria vigor is greatly reduced so it is wasteful to add any until spring.
Some people say adding bacteria is not necessary. To a point, I agree. There is a plethora of bacterium naturally in the air, in the plant dirt and even on the fish. I recommend adding bacteria because we have better control of what bacteria colonizes in the pond. If we were to expose flour and water to the air you will get enough bacteria and yeasts out of the air to eventually get sourdough bread. For the best bread though we would want to introduce a top grade culture just like we do in the pond.
There is a lot more about bacteria and pond chemicals in the maintenance section. br/>
For more informaiton about pond and fountain, please check our website at Pond and Fountain Pros.
Monday, May 15, 2006
52 Tips for Selecting a Pond kit, Pond Construction and Maintenance(7)
12. Why would I want an ultraviolet light?
An ultraviolet light (UV) is used to kill the free-floating alga that passes through it. It will not have any effect on string algae that is anchored on the rocks and pond sides.
13. How are UV lights rated?
It is important to size the light properly. The degree of effectiveness is based on size, strength and length of exposure. There are feuds going on in the UV world because some report the strength of a new bulb versus others that rate their bulbs after they have already lost some of their strength. Don’t undersize the UV light. It is wasting money.
For more information about Pond and Fountain Pros, please visit our website at Pond and Fountain Pros.
Monday, May 08, 2006
52 Tips for Selecting a Pond kit, Pond Construction and Maintenance(6)
11. Some pond kits have a skimmer with the pump in the bottom of it. What do you think of these systems?
A skimmer will draw most of the water off the surface of the pond and should catch almost everything that falls into the pond that floats. It is the first line of pond maintenance. Many pond kits do not have any skimmer. Kits for bigger ponds may have a skimmer with the pump inside works pretty well as the skimmer. Pump-in-skimmer pond kits usually have a box filter at the top of the waterfall. These filters are difficult to hide and when they need to be cleaned, they too can be very messy. They are much easier to clean than in-pond filters.
However, these systems do not take any water off the bottom of the pond. We would prefer a system that draws water from both the surface and the bottom. Bigger ponds often have systems that can easily change the ratio of how much money is taken from the surface vs. bottom so there is built-in flexibility.
For more information, please visit our websit at Pond and Fountain Pros
Monday, May 01, 2006
52 Tips for Selecting a Pond kit, Pond Construction and Maintenance(5)
10. What is a biological filter? I didn’t even know my biology needed filtration.
Any decent pond kit will have a combination biological and mechanical filter. A mechanical filter is usually some kind of matting. This also acts as a biological filter. A biological filter provides lots of surface area that is where we colonize bacteria. These bacteria break down the fish waste and other toxins that become the food for algae or can build up and become toxic for the fish. There are many questions further down covering biological filtration.
When shopping for a pond kit though, the important issue is the filter located in the pond or outside of the pond. Be sure you have good access to the filter. (See Maintenance for more discussion of filter care that includes regular, and often weekly, cleaning of the filter.) If the filter is located in the pond, it will require you, or someone, to pull it out of the pond. Since it can be very heavy, it often spills; dumping the muck back into the water defeating the purpose of removing it. Other filters are in the basin of the waterfall. I find them only slightly more convenient than if it were in the pond.
We prefer filters that are located between the pond and the waterfall. Often they can be dug part way into the back of the waterfall to partially conceal it The best type of filter is one with a back wash valve attached to it. The backwashing is very quick and the refuse goes out a waste pipe to a location of your choosing. I have not found any for very small ponds. The smallest is for a pond about 1500 gallons. The initial cost is more but maintenance is a great deal easier.
For more information about Pond and Fountain, please visit our websit Pond and Fountain Pros