NORTH COUNTY PONDS NEWS (SUMMER ‘09): Each season North County Ponds offers basic pond tips, pond info, and pond maintenance insight. What to look for each season is part of the fun of having your own pond. We take care of, service, and maintain our clients’ ponds as if they were our own. We love ponds, water gardens, and koi fish and enjoy sharing our knowledge and pond experience with you. Summer is our favorite season for the ponds. We get to witness a variety of beautiful koi ponds and water gardens blossom in the summer heat.
FREE POND CONSULTATIONS: North County Ponds is proud to announce we will be continuing our “free consultation program” through the summer months. Every pond ecosystem is different, each pond requires different types of pond maintenance, and pond owners have different wants, needs, and expectations. Our free consultation gives prospective clients the opportunity to meet with one of our pond maintenance technicians and discuss his/her options.
KOI FEEDING: Summer season is the growing season for your koi. Increased pond water temps means more koi activity. Water temps between 70ºF-75ºF boost your koi’s metabolism and strengthen their immune system. Feed your koi 2x daily and have adequate filtration to handle the excess fish waste loads. Your koi are much more active in the summer, so it’s a good idea to continually test your ammonia levels. If treating your koi pond with conditioners or meds, be sure there is adequate levels of dissolved oxygen.
INCREASED AMMONIA: Higher waste loads during summer is a byproduct of increased koi appetites and feeding regimens. It is very important your koi fish are getting adequate water changes and proper pond water treatments. Too much ammonia is toxic for your fish. High ammonia and low oxygen levels during summer can be lethal for your fish. A build-up of excess bubbles forming by the waterfall may be a sign of too much ammonia in your pond.
SUMMER POND ALGAE: Summer brings algae blooms. The increased water temps and sunlight causes fluctuation in pond water chemistry. These rapid or sudden changes is a recipe for stubborn single-cell algae blooms. Unfortunately, once your get the water balanced and clear, it will become a constant battle against string algae for the rest of the season. The increased heat can also cause organic matter on the bottom of the pond to rise to the surface. We recommend using a combination of activated barley enzymes and beneficial bacteria treatments 2x per month (when pond water temps are above 64ºF) to breakdown these two types of algae and help to decompose other organic matter.
AQUATIC PLANT FOOD: Get more blooms this summer with the help of aquatic fertilizer tabs. Lillies and Lotus’ especially, thrive off effective fertilization. Fertilizing 2x per month will help guarantee daily blooms. Removing old, whittled, yellow leaves will also help encourage new growth and keep the pond looking it‘s best.
POND FISH BREEDING: Summer increases fish activity. Fish immune levels peak, while stress levels diminish. For Goldfish, Mosquito Fish, and Platys, summer is breeding season. With healthy fish, healthy water changes, and a healthy pond, your small pond fish population is likely to multiply. Ponds can handle high Mosquito Fish and Platy amounts because they are low impact on the pond. Goldfish on the other hand, breed extremely rapidly and have heavier waste loads. Think twice before adding Goldfish to your pond, especially large ponds over ten thousand gallons, due to the heavy breeding.
DRAGONFLIES: You forget how majestic dragonflies are till you see them hovering around the pond again. These inquisitive little creatures add a lot of character to your pond. They are vibrant in color and are fun to watch fly in, out, and around the pond. Be careful cleaning certain areas of your pond if you choose to do your own maintenance. Dragonfly larvae tend to develop in some of the muckiest waters.
POND PLANT MAINTENANCE: Most aquatic pond plants flourish during warm summer months. It is important keep pond plants properly manicured to keep them in check. In no time, many types of pond plant can completely take over your pond. Overgrowth can lead to pond liner damage, leaks, and decreased flow rates.
TRAP CLEANING: Summer heat can lift a lot of organic matter from the pond floor. This loose matter combined with increased algae growth, can lead to rapid leaf trap clogging. Check your leaf basket and traps once a week to keep your pond running properly. Clogged traps can block water flow to your pump. If your pump runs dry for too long, it will cause permanent pump damage.
POND CHEM USE: Monthly costs for pond chemicals is likely to increase during summer. Pending what your expectations are for algae control is, you may have to invest in more frequent algae control pond treatments. Algae is one of the fastest growing plants on the planet and it thrives in fish ponds. Keeping it under control will require adequate chem treatments.
WAATCH YOUR WATERFALLS: The flow rate of your pond waterfall represents the cleanliness of your filter and pump system. If you notice a weakening or struggling waterfall, there’s a good chance your filter media needs to be cleaned or your leaf traps are clogged. To avoid damage to your pump's motor, do not let your pump run dry!
EVAPORATION: More sunlight and intense heat can cause your pond water to evaporate at a faster rate. It’s our opinion that your pond should lose about 1-2” of water per week in evaporation. When adding tap water to your pond, be sure to always, always use dechlor or other water conditioners to remove harmful chlorine, chloramines, and metals from the water.
If your pond is new or old, large or small, North County Ponds is trained in a variety of pond care services including regular pond maintenance, on-call pond services, pond clean-outs, complete filter system installs, pond water treatments, system cleanings, pond sealing, koi medicating, koi and fish care, algae control, aquatic plant care, and all other aspects of pond and lake management. Call North County Ponds at 760-710-1632 for questions, pricing info, or to schedule a free pond consultation.
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