Plants have slowed their growth and the fish are huddling in the bottom of the pond, even they know it’s winter.
Winter is quiet time for your garden pond, but those sunny winter days are an ideal time to get your pond cleaned up ready for Spring. Here is what to expect from your pond in winter:
Early winter - some ponds will experience a string algae bloom. This is due to decreased plant growth and fish activity. As your pond plants reduce their growth, they are no longer competing with algae for nutrient, fish are also not feeding as vigorously therefore algae can grow rapidly, add a few warm winter days and you can have a massive string algae problem. We recommend reducing fish feed and introducing winter growing pond plants such as Watercress. Manually remove string algae from the pond and apply Zeolite powder to the pond to reduce algae growth without harming your water plants. Remove any sludge from the base of the pond that could be acting as a nutrient store in your pond.
Mid Winter - String algae problems usually resolve at this time. Keep your fish feeding to a minimum, fish are often not interested in feeding and this is normal behaviour. Koi and Goldfish can survive very cold temperatures, you do not need to heat your pond. Oh and try not to fall in your pond…..it will be very cold!
Late Winter/Early Spring - Time to clean up! Remove sludge and leaves from the bottom of your pond, re-pot your water lilies and any pond plants that have outgrown their pots. Stagger your cleaning and plant maintenance over a few weeks so you don’t upset your pond balance. Too much all at once can cause problems with your pond’s delicate ecosystem. Add some healthy pond bacteria to your pond to get your pond spring ready. Sometimes that pesky string algae re-appears at this time, apply Zeolite powder and be patient, as soon as your plants start growing and your fish start feeding this problem will resolve itself.