How to revitalise your stagnant pond
If your garden pond has become something of an eyesore rather than the thing of beauty it once was, now is the perfect time to do something about it.
It’s a dirty job but well worth the trouble, so roll up your sleeves, dig out your wellies and get stuck in.
If your pond already has a pump, start by disconnecting it from the power supply and remove it for cleaning. Now is a good time to check the overall condition of the pump and clean the filter sponges in a bucket of water taken from the pond. Never use tap water as the chlorine will kill off the beneficial bacteria that keep your pond water in balance. If you are using a UV steriliser, or your filter contains a UV bulb, it should be replaced annually as its effectiveness dramatically reduces after 12 months.
After the exceptionally cold weather last winter, you may find your pump or filter has been cracked or damaged and replacing one or both is necessary. Hagen manufactures a range of pumps and filters to suit all shapes and sizes of ponds. There is more information and a water volume calculator to help you choose the best pump and filter combination for your pond on Hagen’s Laguna range website, www.lagunaponds.com.
Now it’s time to get down and dirty. Start by using a pond vacuum to suck up dirt and decaying plant matter from the bottom of the pond. It’s worth investing in a cordless one which will allow you to move freely about the pond without having to worry about running out of cable. Choose one with chopping blades that will help remove plant debris, but take care not to harm any fish or other animals that may be in your path. Some pond vacuums have brushes for cleaning rocks and getting rid of caked on grime; alternatively just use an old fashioned scrubbing brush and elbow grease. Put the pump back in the water and if necessary top-up the level using rain water if available, or alternatively tap water treated with a de-chlorinator. Switch everything on and check the UV light is working using the viewing window. The pump and filter should be left running 24/7 during the summer, this is especially important if you have fish. Finally add a dose of biological supplement to replenish essential biological colonies.
If you’re feeling really creative why not add a waterfall to make your pond look really special? You can make one using pond liner and rocks, or buy a pre-formed waterfall kit. The water should be routed from the filter over the fall and back into the pond. Always remember to use a waterproof bonding sealant on any cement or rendering work.
When everything is looking spick n’ span you might like to think about adding some plants and décor to complete your pond’s new look and maybe add some fish? Pop along to your local aquatic centre and ask their advice about the best species for your location and size of pond.
So that’s it, time to sit back and admire your work looking forward to those long summer days ahead.