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How soon should I start treating my pond with bacteria? – Ponds & Lakes Q & A

Dyed Pond

Q: How soon should I start treating my pond with bacteria? – Justin in Minnesota

Baby It’s Cold Outside
The ice is melting away from the surface of your pond and Spring is already on its way, should bacteria be a part of your ponds Winter/Spring transition? Depending on your location, bacteria may be too busy singing the blues to work on the organics residing in your pond. Adhering to the general rules of thumb below will keep your bacteria working as efficiently as possible, keeping your pockets green and your pond crystal clear.

Aeration, Aeration, wherefore art thou Aeration
It may be cliché to quote Shakespeare in a blog post, but we’ve stressed the importance of aeration for so many seasons now he just may have heard of it himself. Aeration circulates the water in your pond adding oxygen to the water column. Beneficial bacteria, like those found in our ClearPAC®, thrive on oxygen. While we don’t plan on winning any awards for our astounding math skills in the near future, we have hit the nail on the head with this equation: water + oxygen = productive bacteria. You can still use beneficial bacteria in your pond without aeration, but you will definitely get more bang for your buck running an aeration system.

Getting Warmer
You know why to use your ClearPAC® but you are still unsure when to start adding it into your pond. This answer will depend on where you live. The bacteria in PondClear™ really flex their muscles when your water temperatures reach 50° and up. This means that areas with warmer climates will start adding their bacteria earlier in the season than those of us pond guys and gals who are still digging their cars out of snow drifts. Check your water temperature regularly and begin your applications accordingly. To really give your bacteria a boost, use EcoBoost™ along with every dose of PondClear™.

The Life of the PRE-Party
While your PondClear™ & EcoBoost™ are patiently waiting in their buckets, your Pond Dye is ready for action all year long. We strongly suggest adding Pond Dye—even if your pond ices over—as algae can grow in cold temperatures and can still utilize sunlight through the ice.

POND TALK: When do you start your bacteria applications in your pond? How do you kick off the opening of your pond for the season?

16 Responses

  1. Can I use this if I’m considering pumping water for my pond to use for irrigation in my vegetable garden?

    • Hi Lynn – You can use these products however they do take time to work. If you pull large amounts of water for irrigation PondClear may not be as effective. Smaller amounts of water for a personal garden shouldn’t be an issue.

  2. How do all of these products affect the fish, fresh water clams, the frogs, and the turtles?

  3. I have a spring fed pond, but the downside is the 3 spring heads are boxed in a well for our house..we have one pipe running from the box into the pond constantly pouring the fresh spring water in. We have tons of Lilly pads, algae etc. It used to be as clear as a blue hole where we could swim and see everything, now it’s horrible. I know taking down the box and letting the spring heads fully run into the spring would clear It out but we can’t do that right now… what would you suggest we do to get it back to the blue spring it once was ?

    • Hi Beth – EcoBoost™ and natural bacteria such as PondClear™ will help clear the pond of suspended organic debris and improve the water’s clarity. I also talk to many pond owners who once had clear water and now have cloudy or muddy water and find that they had also stocked catfish. They root around the pond’s bottom stirring up mud which can also cause cloudy water issues.

  4. Does Lime kill algae in a goldfish pond without hurting fish?

    • Hi Holly – Lime is not suggested for use in small ponds. Lime is typically added in large ponds to help with pH to actually cause an algae bloom. What kind of algae are you experiencing: green water or string algae?

  5. How’s it going?
    I live in Arizona and want to turn my pool into a pond with fish and plants. But in the summer months I want my family and I to be able to swim in it. What would be a safe way to start this up? Also my kids bring up brain eating amoebas what do you know about these organisms.

    • Hi Brandon – I would do a Google search for converting a pool to a pond. There are many different projects people have completed. This would give you the best starting point. Some things to keep in mind if you move forward with the project:
      – Depending on your pool, you may have to reline with pool with fish safe EPDM. Otherwise, chlorine may leach from the existing liner into the pond.
      – You will need to change your filtration system. The sand filter system in most pools is not capable of handling the larger waste from a pond environment. It tends to clog easily causing more maintenance work for you.
      As for the amoebas, the CDC points out that there have been 31 recorded deaths in a 10 year period, compared to over 39,000 drowning deaths in a similar period. Here is more information from the CDC: Prevention & Control of Naegleria fowleri

  6. […] with an Aeration System. If you are a new pond owner, or have just found our blog page, click HERE to learn more about these products and how they improve the quality of your […]

  7. […] your toes this season and less squish. For more information on treating your pond with bacteria click here or read our Aeration Articles to learn about the many other benefits of aerating your […]

  8. I get the aeration, but for an 18 acre lake it’s too expensive and ineffective. Here’s my question: should I raise the water level of the lake, which I can do, to “drown down” the weeds?

    • Hi Tricia,

      You won’t be able to drown the weeds out. Remember they are aquatic weeds and will be able to grow even if you add another couple feet of water as long as they can reach nutrients and sunlight. You can however focus your efforts of aeration, bacteria or quick treatment on a smaller portion of the lake in an area that you may use more often such as a portion directly in front of your house or a beach.

  9. Why is it so important for aeration for my pond? I have had the pond for over 30 years and have never aerated it. Of course there is a lot of muck, sea week, cat tails growing in my pond that I have to remove by hand. I had fish in my pond for years but last summer they all disappeared. We had a lot of frogs and turtles in our pond last summer.

    We would like to use our pond to swim in and fish in during the summer. What would you recommend?

    • Hi Joseph,

      Aeration is important for many reasons including, getting oxygen to the bottom of the pond, stimulating beneficial bacteria to help decompose organic material and reducing turnover which happens in the spring and fall. Every pond will be different depending on the amount of debris it receives and the amount of fish contained and the size of the pond itself. Some ponds can go 10-15 years before they have a large accumulation of debris and some within the first 3-5 years. At some point the debris will accumulate in the pond quicker than it can be removed. When this happens the pond may become more difficult to control for algae and other weeds. As these weeds die and accumulate in the pond more oxygen will be reduce and this could eventually cause a big problem for your fish, especially in the winter when they go dormant in the ponds bottom where oxygen will be less abundant. I would definitely recommend aeration and well as natural bacteria such as Pond Clear to aid along with physical removal in quickly breaking down the organic material accumulating in the bottom of the pond.

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