Seasonal Hints for the Fall

Preparing The Pond For Winter

September - Give your plants their last dose of fertilizer tablets. Remove any dead or dying foliage and flowers and cut back any heavy growth of water hyacinths and oxygenators. A net should be used to remove any debris from the bottom of the pool. Such agitation of the pool will stir up the sediment - your submersible or external filter should be running to remove as much of this as possible. You may want to transplant some of your lilies, lotus , marginals at this time. Remember, larger containers means larger plants - small pools may require the dwarfing effect of small containers. If falling or blowing leaves threaten, a pond net cover can be placed over the pool.

October/November - Fish owners need to be aware of the winter needs of their pets, especially in water quality. When the water tempuratures hit 55 degrees their metabolism slows down and they will stop eating. Filters should be running to remove particles, convert ammonia and to oxygenate the water. The larger the fish population, the more serious the need for supplemental filtration and oxygenation - oxygenating plants go dormant also. Some people find it desirable to do a 50% water change at this time. This would reduce toxic gases and be done so as to increase the oxygen content of the water. Use a water treatment to break down the chloramines and to add colloids to the water.

Dead foliage and flowers need to be removed from the pool. As they decay they will consume oxygen
and may release toxic gases. As Fall sets in and frosts take their toll, the water hyacinths and other
annuals should be removed. Oxygentors should be cut back and any accumulated debris should be netted out. Hardy grasses, rushes, and lotus should wait until spring to be cut back.

Late Fall - Hardy aquatic plants should be lowered to the bottom of the pool as needed. Fish owners should install their pond de-icer to be switched on during extreme cold weather. Fountains, waterfalls and filters may be used into early winter but they should not be allowed to freeze. Ice expansion can destroy some filters so these should be drained and removed to storage for the winter.

Some pond lighting can add a new dimension of pleasure to our water gardening experience. Low voltage lights can be installed in the pool and decorative low voltage fixtures can be placed to light the pool surface or any other statue.

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