If you’re looking at green murky water in your pond then it’s probably due to the dreaded algae. This grim reaper of ponds was featured in our last post when we discussed how algae is created and this week we will talk about how to control algae in your pond. Pond scum not only affects the water clarity and quality but also depletes the pond of essential oxygen. Fortunately, there are a few easy steps to controlling and eliminating algae.
Proper Plant Balance
If you have just built a new pond and want to avoid algae problems or have a current problem to control, increasing the number of oxygenating plants on the surface of the pond is where you will want to start. This is perhaps the easiest, long-term solution to keeping water clean and clear.
Make sure you have the right type and number of plants in your pond. Anarchis and other underwater plants and floating plants, like lilies and lotus, remove excess nutrients from the pond by absorbing these nutrients for their own growth and depriving the algae of its food source. Provide around 2/3 surface coverage using floating plants, floaters (like Water Lettuce or Water Hyacinth), or other plants that provide shade and reduce direct sunlight in the pond to control the growth of algae. Underwater plants also release oxygen to the water and as a guide, one bunch of six to seven strands of oxygenating plant can be added to every two square feet of water surface, and submerged by tying to a rock or planting in a soil container.
If an algae problem already exists, water treatments are an easy and efficient option. Green murky water and string algae can be contained using repeated applications of an effective water treatment, like Algaecide from Total Pond. Also using a Water Clarifier and Barley Pond Clarifier can produce cleaner and clearer water. For maximum effectiveness, reapply all treatments but be sure to follow dosage instructions.
Maintaining a clean pond may seem like a chore but it will help stop the growth of algae. Clear debris and string algae by using a garden hose to remove it off rocks and from waterfalls, or get rid of it by hand or net. A pond vacuum can be useful to remove debris that is too fine for the net or skimmer. You can also use a Sludge Remover to get rid of excess sludge that will clog your filter. A ¼ inch of sludge on the bottom of your pond is actually beneficial but anything more should be removed.
UV Clarifiers for Green Water
Purchase a high-quality UV Pond Clarifier that provides green UV light technology to sterilize your pond water. Sterilization will help prevent nasty odors and murky water. Ultraviolet technology is often used in ponds to eliminate microscopic organisms that end up becoming those dreaded algae blooms. It exposes suspended single-celled algae to very high levels of ultra violet light, which destroys its reproductive ability. The addition of the UV Clarifier gives an extra step of clean as the water passes over the Ultraviolet Bulb, cleaning the green out of water. How it works is the UV light kills the suspended algae, causing them to clump together into particles large enough to be removed by filtration, and then exits the clarifier. Nutrient pollutants are removed from the water as it passes through a mechanical and/or a biological filter, exiting back into the pond as clean water. Total Pond offers a durable Pressurized Biological Filter that combines biological and mechanical filtration to stabilize, purify, and fortify your pond water.
Balance is Key
No pond is ever fully algae-free, especially maturing ponds, but in a balanced environment algae can be limited. A good place to start is to understand how pond scum forms and cultivates. Then determine the type of algae existing in your pond and use appropriate treatments to combat the scum. UV clarifiers, water treatments, and other algae removers are effective techniques for treating and preventing algae production. But adding plants is an all-natural remedy that should be part of the long-term solution.
Follow these steps and you can start seeing the beautiful, unobstructed tranquility of your water garden.