A beautiful water garden is home to a host of living things and we all want to ensure that habitat stays healthy for the sake of our fish and plants and also our own enjoyment. Good water quality is fundamental to a healthy pond with clear water. Our challenge is knowing how to achieve and keep healthy and clear water

Here are some pointers.

  • Pick the right sized pump for your pond.
  • The pump is the heart of the pond. You must get enough water moving continuously to provide enough aeration for a stable eco-system and enough flow to distribute it to the whole pond.
  • You should aim for a minimum of 1 hour to move the entire pond volume so if you have a 1000 gallon pond you need a minimum of 1000 gallons per hour and remember this is actual flow from the end of the pump-pipe so you need to allow for the height of the waterfall and the length of the hose as these will all reduce flow.

Balanced Filtration

Effective biological filtration is fundamental to producing clear healthy water however not all biological filters are effective!
They need to be paired with a mechanical filter which will remove solids before the biological filter.
Without effective mechanical filtration the biological filters clog up and cease to function – in fact they can become a hazard to pond health.

In the Aquascape System the Mechanical filtration is performed by a surface skimmer which traps both suspended and floating solids. The floating solids e.g leaves and anything else the wind blows in are trapped in an easily emptied skimmer basket.
Our pumps sit in the bottom of the skimmer so in addition to being out of sight they immediately deliver the filtered water to the biological filter.

The Biological Filtration is provided by the Aquascape Bio-Falls biological filter which in addition to starting the waterfall/stream return to the pond contains both foam filtration and a special media called bio-balls which serves as home to colonies of beneficial bacteria which digest dissolved wastes from the mechanically filtered water.

This is what we call a paired system; sizes and flows are calculated, then balanced to try to position the Skimmer and Bio-Falls as far apart as possible for maximum flow.

Keeping a healthy fish population

In a healthy eco-system pond it’s difficult to stop your fish breeding and as much as we love when this happens we want to avoid over stocking.

There are no hard and fast rules but generally if you have more than 1 inch of fish for every 100 gallons then pay attention to the water quality and start thinking if you can re-home some of your fish.

One of the joys of having pond fish is interacting with them at feeding time. Many koi will even stick their heads out the water in their eagerness to be hand fed.

However this can be problematic to water quality – try not to over feed and not more than can be consumed in 2-3 minutes. Uneaten food will decay.

Pond Plants

Aquatic plants are an important part of an eco-system. They help filter the water by absorbing excess nutrients as they grow and provide shade and shelter for fish.

As a rule aim for 50% of the surface area of your pond to be shaded by aquatic plants.

There are 4 basic categories:

  • Hardy Waterlilies
    These are a favourite and all ponds look better with lilies available in 4 main colour types, white,red,pink and yellow. Different varieties suit different depths of water so pick the colour and size to suit.
  • Marginal Plants
    Thrive in the shallow water around the edge of the pond and include some spectacular flowering types as well as ground cover varieties which help soften rock edges and improve the natural look.
  • Floating Plants
    Many of these are tropical and will not survive cold winter so treat them as an annual. They provide leaf shade and extensive roots systems for fish and fry to hide in as well as being extremely efficient in filtering water.
  • Submerged Plants
    Sometimes called “Oxygenators” they are planted at the bottom of the ponds providing shelter as well as function.

Maintain your pond.

Regularly remove decaying leaves and any other debris and fish waste that arrives in the pond and as we mentioned earlier remove any uneaten food.
Left to decay these may cause problems with the water chemistry giving rise to toxic Ammonia which will stress and may prove fatal to fish with prolonged exposure.

During Autumn invest in a net to catch leaf debris if you are near trees and trim out any dying pond plants

Enjoy your pond

The above tips will help you get more enjoyment from your pond. Remember when a pond is murky and looks unattractive it is usually because one or more of the above is not being followed.

It also usually means that you do not have an Aquascape Eco-system pond

If you need help just ask us