Pond FAQ

 

You have questions, we have answers!

 

The following questions and answers will help you with some concerns you may have regarding your pond. Feel free to call us at (352) 622-9316 if your issue is not covered here.

 

How much Beneficial Bacteria do I put in my pond and how frequently?

Apply approximately 1 scoop (tablespoon) of HydroStart Beneficial Bacteria for each 1000 gallons of pond water to your skimmer. Apply this daily for the first two weeks and once every week thereafter. Your pond will go through a green stage which is expected. Your pond takes 8 to 10 weeks to establish and become it's own natural eco-system.

 

How do I know how many gallons I have in my pond?

Multiply your pond's length times the width times the average depth, then multiply that sum by 7.5. The resulting number will be the approximate capacity of your pond in gallons.

For example, Joey has a 8ftx4ft pond that is 3 feet deep. Using our formula LxWxDx7.5 = gallons, we can plug in our numbers 8x4x3x7.5 and calculate that Joey's pond holds approximately 720 gallons of water.

 

Why is there a large growth of algae in my pond, and how can I get rid of it?

Don't be surprised if your pond begins to grow algae. It takes time for the bacteria colonies to establish themselves and actually start helping the water quality. In general, a new pond can take anywhere from 2-8 weeks for bacteria colonies to reach effective population density. Give the bacteria some time, and be patient. It takes several weeks for a pond to evolve into a living, balanced ecosystem. On average, your pond will need more Beneficial Bacteria in the spring and fall, when the water is cold, and less when the water is warm during the summer.

 

How do I get rid of String Algae around the pond's perimeter?

Use HydroBalance Pond Guard. First remove the string algae from around the sides of the pond. Mix 4 tablespoons of HydroBalance Pond Guard per 500 gallons in a bucket of water. Pour evenly around the perimeter

 

How often do I feed my fish and how do I know if I have too many?

Feed your fish once or twice a week. This will create less fish waste which is a big source of food for algae. Your Koi are natural bottom feeders and will actually eat the algae off the rocks and gravel. Feeding your fish less will allow them to get an appetite for the algae and help you maintain your pond! As a general rule, you should have 1 inch of fish per square foot of pond surface area. Easily calculate the surface area of your pond by multiplying the length times the width.

 

When do I clean my skimmer debris basket and filter mat?

The net inside your Skimmer Filter will collect leaves, twigs, seeds, and other pond debris. It takes approximately 2 to 3 minutes per week in the summer to empty the debris net. More frequent emptying will be required during the Fall and Spring due to the quantity of leaves falling off the surrounding trees. The filter mat in the skimmer is located behind the skimmer net. Just pull it out, hose it off thoroughly, and put it back. Do this once a week or as needed.

 

When do I clean my Biological Filter, or WaterFalls?

The Waterfall filter requires cleaning no mere than once or twice a year. Rinsing filter mats more often will kill all of the beneficial bacteria that is growing on them. Touch of Paradise Designs offers its yearly Spring Cleanout around February of each year. Sign up Now with Touch of Paradise Designs and reserve your Spring Cleanout for next year. It is possible your pond will require a Cleanout in the Fall, due to leaves falling, etc. We shall send out Fall Cleanout letters in September for this service.

 

How do I take care of my fish?

There are many diseases and infections in the fish world. Since we have limited control over our fish, there are three things that we, as pond owners, can do: a) Maintain a healthy environment where they can thrive. b) Feed them a proper diet of labeled fish food. All fish food should be stored in a cool, dry area. c) Observe your fish in a healthy state. Being familiar with their normal appearance and habits will make it much easier to detect, and even diagnose, potential problems. Adding Non-iodized salt is beneficial to fish by protecting their skin. The maximum dosage you should add to your pond is 1 pound of salt per 100 gallons and the minimum dosage for stress relief is 1/4 pound per 100 gallons or 1 pound per 400 gallons.

 

Will my pond increase the mosquito population in my neighborhood?

No! Actually your pond is hurting the mosquito population! Mosquitoes lay their larvae in bodies of water like your pond and anything else that will hold water, like overturned frisbees, old tires, etc. As an ecosystem your pond expects this. Your fish, as well as frogs and dragonflies are primed and ready for these larvae to arise, and they gobble up as many as they can find. Your skimmer filter kills many larvae too, because they like to hang out on the water's surface and get sucked into it. The over-turned frisbee, however, is just the kind of stagnant, predator-free home in which larvae flourish into their blood sucking adult form. So the more larvae a mosquito mom lays in your pond, the better off your fish, your yard, and your neighborhood will be.

 

What do I do if I have frogs and tadpoles in my pond?

Nothing. The presence of amphibians and other aquatic wildlife is an indicative of a healthy, thriving aquatic ecosystem. Just sit back and enjoy their song. Your Koi will eat most of the tadpoles and help control some of the frog population.

 

Will predators eat my fish?

We pond owners always worry that raccoons, possums, herons and snakes will eat our fish, but consider this: Raccoons and possums are not swimmers. Yes, they could possibly stand on the side of your pond late at night and take swipe at your fish, but when most fish see movement at the edge of the pond they immediately dive to the deepest part and hide in the rocks, etc. Herons and other large birds can be very adept at spotting fish from high in the air, swooping down, and helping themselves to your prized fish. Herons problems are generally discouraged with a motion activated sprinkler or a water loaded scarecrow that is designed to spray water at anything that its infrared sensor sees moving by the side of the pond. If birds continue to be a problem, netting can be installed over the pond to deter them. Many people think that their water garden will draw snakes into the yard, but in 99% of our installations, snakes just never show up! If they do, they are likely just stopping by to get a drink. If you live in a rural area, you may see many types of wildlife enjoying your pond.

 

How many aquatic plants should I put in my pond?

A good rule of thumb is to cover about 40 to 80 percent of the pond surface area with aquatic plants. Water Lilies will help shade the pond while their roots absorb excess nutrients. Water lilies also provide shelter for your fish from predators. Marginals, like irises, rushes, arrowheads and cattails, also do a great job at absorbing excess nutrients. They look nice too!

 

How often should I fertilize my water lilies?

Fertilizer tabs are the most convenient way to fertilize your water lilies, especially while they are in the pond. The tabs require no measuring, you just poke them into the soil or gravel by the plant's root system. Apply 2 tabs per plant, every 2-3 months, they are 100% fish safe and will not promote algae growth.

 

REMEMBER: The elements making up your natural, organic, holistic aquatic ecosystem include:

 


These elements work together, like a team, to make up your ecosystem. THEY MUST ALL BE PRESENT in order for the system to work. If you eliminate any one of them (like the gravel in the bottom, or aquatic plants, or fish, etc.) your pond is out of balance! And being out of balance could turn your Touch of Paradise into a nightmare! Thankfully we work with nature, not against it, and thus are able to avoid many problems.

Feel free to call us at (352) 622-9316 if you have any additional questions or concerns, or if you would like to schedule maintenance for your pond.

Imagine your life with a Touch of Paradise...

The daily grind wears on us all. What if you could come home to a soul soothing refuge at the end of the day?

A place filled with the sound of water running over stone and the sight of brightly colored Koi darting about under the surface?

A place where you could listen to the water, watch the fish, and relax. We can make that vision your reality by adding a Touch of Paradise to your space.

We will create a naturally balanced ecosystem in your backyard that requires little maintenance, increases property value, attracts wildlife, and gives you and yours a place you can escape to, without ever leaving home.

Sound good? Request your FREE design consultation today!