Fall Pond Maintenance

 

There are a number of things that need to be done to your pond as we transition from the hot months of summer to the winter.  As the weather cools your pond fish and plants are transitioning into a dormant state.  As such, your fish care and pond maintenance routines will change as well.

Fish
If you feed your fish regularly during the summer, be sure to reduce feeding when temperatures drop below 60F.  You should not feed more than once or twice weekly.  When temperatures drop below 50F, stop feeding your fish altogether.  Remember that fish metabolism is dropping as the temperatures drop and over-feeding could kill your fish due to their reduced digestive processes.

Pond Plants
Make sure you remove all tropical plants (Canna, Calla Lilly, Palm, etc.) before the first freeze.  Many tropicals can be allowed to dry out and replanted again in the spring.  Place them in peat moss or wood shavings and put in a closet or warm basement.

Cut back your hardy bog plants (Cattail, Grasses, Iris, etc.) that grow around the pond edges.  Bog plants love the wet sloppy mud along the sides of the pond and will come back in the spring bigger and better than ever.
Submerged plants with roots that extend to the bottom of the pond (Water Lilly, Asian Lotus, Hornwort, etc.) can winter in the pond as long as the pond depth is below the freeze line for your area.
Cleaning the Pond
Remove all leaves, debris, sticks, decomposing organic matter and fish secretions from the bottom of the pond.  A total clean out using a pond vacuum or siphon is ideal.  No matter how it is done, the pond must be clean.  If the pond freezes over with excessive organic waste on the bottom, ammonia gasses that are produced through decomposition may kill your fish.
Covering the pond with  netting in the fall will prevent debris getting into the pond.  Our heavy duty and premium netting can be re-used season after season.

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