- How to Waterproof a Concrete Koi Pond
- Smartweed Weed
- How to Clean a Pond Liner
- Copper Sulfate Pond Treatment
- How to Make Pond Soil
- How to Kill Moss in a Pond
- How to Fix Holes in Plastic Garden Ponds
- How to Seal a Leaking Cement Pond
- How To Install Ultraviolet Lights in a Pond
- How to Fill a Pond
- How to Design & Build a Landscape Waterfall
- Types of Pond Bacteria
- How to Disinfect Water Garden Plants
- Installing A Lily Pond, Page 5
- How to Install a Filter in a Garden Pond
- How to Repair Plastic Pond Liners
- Pond Plants Information
- How to Repair a Crack in a Concrete Pond
Koi ponds are an attractive and entertaining outdoor feature that will really make your garden special. They can be constructed using concrete and are easy to form and mold into the shape that best suits your landscaping. Poorly constructed concrete may crack or leach alkalies into the water that will be harmful to your koi. It's best to seal your concrete koi pond to ensure that it lasts long and doesn't leave your fish sitting high and dry.
Seal your concrete koi pond by rendering the walls with a special rendering mixture. The mixture is a combination of one part cement with two parts soft sand. Add 1/2 kilogram of plastic reinforcing fibers to each mixture to make the pond resistant to cracking and leaks. Using a steel float, apply the rendering mixture in one coat. Allow the mixture 24 hours to cure before painting. The mixture will cure to a light gray color.
Alternatively, use a sealer to prevent water from leaking out of your concrete koi pond. Pond Armor epoxy shield will seal your pond in three easy steps: (1) Mix the epoxy sealer well and pour it into the pond, then (2) use a squeegee to spread the sealer evenly over the pond; finally, (3) go over the sealer with a paint roller to ensure that it is evenly spread. It should be about 10 millimeters thick. Allow it to cure for an hour. Once the sealer has dried, touch up any patches that are too thick.
As another alternative, waterproof your koi pond using a cement sealer. Thoroseal is a powdered cement sealer that is mixed with water and applied with a coarse bristled brush. Thoroseal forms a complete seal by actually becoming part of the masonry.
Polygonum hydropiper, or Smartweed, can grow as tall as 3 feet. At first, it creeps taller; but eventually the stem straightens out and it holds itself erect. Its leaves are lance-shaped and a bit wavy. The greenish pink flowers are delicate in nature, and tend to droop down. Like some other weeds, Smartweed is thought to have numerous homeopathic benefits, including helping with coughs, colds and amenorrhoea.
Smartweed grows best in shady, moist areas. It can even live partially submerged in water. It is an annual, and reproduces by seed. Each plant can produce more than 3,000 seeds.
Cultivation and Care
If you wish to cultivate smartweed for its medicinal uses, you're in luck, because it isn't difficult to do: Simply plant seeds or transplant an entire plant in winter. Most people want to control smartweed. It is particularly damaging to crops, as it grows quickly and can wipe them out. In fact, farmers will often use fire to kill these plants. Even in small gardens, it does the same. Another problem is that it attracts plant-eating insects, such as the Japanese beetle. These insects will compound the problems caused by smartweed. You can pull these baby plants out, making sure to get all the roots. Use a fork to pry under it if you need to. If you are cutting off or pulling out mature plants, tie a plastic bag over the head to reduce reseeding. Many times the plants have been around for years. In this case, maintenance may be your best option. Each time a flower blooms, cut it off. This will reduce reseeding.
Weed Control Techniques
If you have smartweed growing in a pond, a herbicide called Habitat can help. You may want to replace the weeds with other plants, though, so you can avoid oxygen depletion within the pond. For soil gardens, there are a wide variety of broad-spectrum and specific herbicides that will work on Smartweed. You can ask which one works best in your area at your local garden center. If you have a serious infestation, ask a professional about flaming the plants. Removing shade trees, as a last resort, will also help as it will expose the weeds to too much sun.
Skim off any algae or debris off the top of the pond with the pool skimmer net. Put the debris in the trash can.
Place the fish tank in a cool, shady location. Fill a bucket full of the pond water and dump it in the fish tank. Use the fish net to grab the fish, if any, from the pond and place them in the fish tank.
Plug the pond vacuum in and turn it on. Insert the vacuum hose into the bottom of the pond. Work your way from the outer edge of the pond toward the deeper center of the pond. Focus on sucking up all the silt, weeds and fish feces covering the liner by running the vacuum hose flush along the pond liner to ensure you remove all the waste and debris.
Shut off and empty the pond vacuum tank when it gets full and dump it in the trash can. If you sucked up too much water in the process of cleaning the silt from the pond liner, add water to the pond, using the hose, until it reaches the level you want.
Excessive algae may accumulate in ponds. It may float on the surface and form a scum. Excessive algae can reduce the amount of oxygen in a pond to such an extent that fish die. Parasites such as ich may also harm pond fish.
Copper sulfate kills algae and many fish parasites on contact. It also will kill many weeds that infest a pond. Uniform spraying of a water solution of copper sulfate will guarantee that the copper sulfate spreads evenly across the pond. It is an inexpensive treatment and easy to apply.
Poisonous to Fish
Excessive application of copper sulfate will kill fish, especially if water is low in alkalinity. If a pond contains less that 50 milligrams of alkaline material per liter, a pond should not be treated with copper sulfate, according to the University of Kentucky College of Agriculture.
If copper sulfate kills a thick mat of algae at once, the decaying vegetation may deprive the pond of oxygen. For dense algal blooms, it is better to apply copper sulfate to the worst spots instead of giving the pond a complete copper sulfate treatment.
Search your yard for clay-based soil that has little organic matter in it. Purchase topsoil in bags, if necessary, from a garden center. The heavier and denser the soil, the better.
Put three parts topsoil into a wheelbarrow. Pick out organic matter such as bark or leaf compost that will float in the pond once the soil is submerged.
Add one part well-rotted cow manure to the topsoil. Thoroughly combine the contents of the wheelbarrow with the shovel so there is a consistent blend and texture.
Add water to the mixture if it is overly dry and you cannot judge its density. Slowly add water and mix so you don't inadvertently make the soil into a soupy mess of mud. You want it to be sticky, like warm cookie dough.
Remove the top layer of the moss with a mechanical pond weed cutter. The top layer will have strands of moss floating along the surface. The strands will look like long pieces of rope. Cut the strands by inserting the mechanical weed cutter into the water and passing it over the strand area.
Remove the moss strands by raking them toward the boat and pulling them on board. Always remove the cut strands, as they will otherwise sink to the bottom of the lake and re-root.
Obtain some Triloid grass carp and introduce them into your lake. These carp eat any and all vegetative matter in a lake and over time will kill the moss entirely. Speak with your local county fish and game office to verify the necessary number for your sized lake, as these fish live for roughly 10 years and consume very large amounts of plants.
Drain the pond to below the hole. Remove any fish that may be adversely affected by the lower water depth.
Thoroughly wash the area around the hole with naptha soap and an abrasive sponge. The plastic should be completely cleaned before continuing.
Dry the entire area completely with the paper towels. Any dampness will cause the patching tape to fail.
Measure the hole, allowing a 1-inch margin completely around the damaged area. Cut the necessary size of patching tape and apply the tape to the area. Press the tape down firmly with a roller to remove any air bubbles and promote bonding.
Cover the edges of the patch with lap sealant to increase the waterproofness and life of the patch. Allow the patch to dry for at least 24 hours before refilling the pond. This will ensure the entire sealant is dry and bonded.
Empty your cement pond and clean the algae off the walls. Find temporary homes for any fish and plants living in your pond.
Remove all loose material around the crack using a chisel. Chisel inside the crack also, to open it into a "V" shape.
Fill the crack with either a waterproof epoxy or waterproof cement using a putty knife. Make sure there are no air bubbles. Scrape the filling flush with the side of the pond and allow it to dry for at least 48 hours.
Apply a pond membrane or waterproof paint over the entire pond using a paintbrush. Follow the manufacturer's directions. If you did not see an obvious crack, you can try this step first to find out if that will stop any small leaks your pond may have.
Fill your pond with water and place your fish and plants back in.
A garden pond provides depth and beauty to just about any landscape. However, keeping these ponds crystal clear is a constant fight against algae. One way that you can help defeat this enemy is by installing ultraviolet lights in your pond. They operate inline with your filter system and kill the algae by using ultraviolet light. Installing will take a couple of hours, but the spectacular results for your pond's clarity are worth it.
Find out how much water you'll need to fill your pond in the future by attaching a flow meter to the hose before you begin filling. As an alternative, you can measure the amount of time it takes to fill a 5-gallon water bucket with your hose. Divide the time by five to determine the time it takes to fill one gallon, which is the flow rate.
Turn on the hose and allow water to flow to fill the pond. When using the estimate method, determine the time it takes to fill the pond and divide the time by the flow rate; the result is the amount of water your pond needs.
Turn on the pump. Check the electrical connections if the pump doesn’t work. A faulty pump is rare, but it is possible.
Take a tour around your pond and check the hose and piping for leaks. If you find any leaks, tighten the fitting to stop water from flowing.
The sound of running water is soothing and can add tranquility to any landscape. You can either pair a landscape waterfall with a pond or create one without a pond. These instructions describe how to design and build a waterfall without a pond.
Several different groups of pond bacteria include photosynthetic, heterotrophs, sulfate reducers and methanogens. Photosynthetics contain chlorophyll and make food by using sunlight for photosynthesis. Heterotrophs live off of decaying matter. Sulfate reducers live in sediments, breathing sulfate instead of oxygen. Methanogens live on the bottom, producing methane or swamp gas. Most pond bacteria can only be seen through a microscope; large clusters can be seen as a scum or algae.
Aerobic vs. Anaerobic
Pond chemical companies offer mixtures of good bacteria to treat your pond. Good bacteria (aerobic) break down organic waste such as dead food and vegetation. Bad bacteria (anaerobic) produce odors and poor water quality.
Fossilized diatoms are used in toothpastes and filters. Up to 10,000 species of diatoms exist. Elongated diatoms move around and the round ones do not. Many pond bacteria can live on the surface of moist soil as well as in water.
If you are concerned about odor or scum on your pond, take a sample to your local agricultural center or state extension office for analysis.
According to safewater.org, avoid drinking from a pond as some bacteria like E. coli can cause illness. Water may be contaminated with this bacteria if you have farm animals using or living near the pond, or from wild animals dropping contaminated feces in or near the water.
Fill a bucket with 12 to 13 gallons of fresh water.
Empty 4 tbsp. of potassium permanganate into the water. Stir the powder thoroughly to dissolve it. This creates a potassium permanganate concentration that effectively sterilizes all unwanted parasites, pests and organisms.
Place the water plants into the solution. Let the plants soak for two hours.
Remove the plants, rinse them with fresh water and release them into your pond or water feature.
Landscape and Finish Off
Once you have the pond filled with water and the liner is settled, you need to trim the liner. Fold the liner over the lip of the pond and, using a pair of scissors, trim around the edge of the pond. You should leave some extra material around the edge, do not trim it too close.
Now it is time to landscape. Regardless of whether you have a multi-tiered pond, stone is a favorite material for landscaping the pond and hiding the liner. Start laying the stone around the perimeter. If you are laying the stone on the liner at any point, use flat rocks and avoid placing sharp points against the liner. Pile the rocks over the liner and make a short wall around the pond.
It is a good idea to at this point to put pond plants into the pond and let them stabilize. Wait about 5 days to put fish into the pond.
Pick a submerged filter for small- or medium-size ponds and an external filter for a large pond.
Connect the filter to the pump with a hose with threaded connectors.
Tighten the connectors by hand so they will be easy to undo when the pump, hoses or filter needs a cleaning.
Put the hose that exits the filter at the bottom of the pond or attach it to a floating fountain or waterfall.
Place an external filter on a solid, flat surface.
Pick a place in a spot in the pond where a submerged filter is less likely to come in contact with falling leaves and other debris.
Plug the filter into a ground fault circuit interrupter. It will automatically shut down in case of a short circuit.
Remove all the fish from the pond and place in a holding tank. Drain the pond to below where the hole is located. If you are unsure where the hole is located, use a medicine dropper and some milk to find the leak.
Scrub the entire area around the hole with naptha soap and an abrasive sponge to remove any dirt and grime.
Rub the area dry with paper towels. Verify that the entire surface is completely dry before applying the tape.
Measure the hole with a tape measure and add an additional inch around all the edges. Cut out the patch from its roll to match your measurements. Apply the sticky side of the patch to the area and rub firmly with a roller to establish the strongest bond.
Cover the sides of the patch with lap sealant and allow the patch to air dry for 24 hours before adding any additional water to the pond.
Marginal pond plants grow in and along the boggy borders of a pond in 3 to 6 inches of water. They are rooted in place with leaves that grow above the waterline.
Submerged plants are also rooted in place, but the vegetative growth occurs underwater. These soft-bodied plants are used to add oxygen to the water.
Floating plants are not rooted in place. They float on the surface of the water and have roots that extend into the water, absorbing excess nutrients that can cause an algae bloom.
Algae are simple, non-flowering plants that can be free-floating or condensed into hair-like strands. Often considered a weed when it exists in large quantities, algae is, according to Ohio State University, the "foundation of the aquatic food chain."
Some types of pond plants are invasive. Plants such as purple loosestrife and water hyacinth must be carefully monitored to prevent escape.
Drain the pond. This can be done by siphoning the water or using an electric pump. It may be easier to remove plants and fish while the pond is draining if you still have large amounts of water in the pond.
Inspect the concrete. Examine it carefully, as water can escape through even the smallest of cracks.
Widen the crack. If the crack is narrow, widen it with a hammer and chisel. This way your sealing compound will penetrate into the crack.
Clean the area. Use a stiff wire brush to clean off algae, plant growth and any other debris from the crack and the immediately surrounding area.
Fill the crack. Use a trowel to fill the crack with mortar or with a commercial sealing compound. There are dry powder colorants that can be mixed with the compound before applying to match the color of your concrete pond. This way your repair job will be virtually invisible.
Sand the area. To smooth in the area that's been repaired, use sandpaper to bring it down to the original surface.