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Oxygenators for the pond

One of the things on my “List of Things to Do in 2012” is to sort out my pond / water feature. That was pushed to the top of the list when my pond guy upped his rate by another 30% (30% every year for the last three years) which means he is now very expensive for the twenty minutes it takes him to clean the pond. I haven’t fired him yet because I like him, but it’s very extravagant. So I’m now learning to take care of the pond myself.

The first thing I did was do a bit of research and one of the first websites I got info from via a google search was from Pam at Diggings in her post entitled “How to make a stock tank pond“. It’s an extremely informative post where I learnt this: “You’ll want to choose at least three types of plants for your new pond: oxygenators (submerged plants), marginals (water’s edge plants), and deep-water aquatics (plants that sit on the bottom and have leaves on the surface, like water lilies). Water lilies may be sexy, but the hard-working oxygenators are very important in maintaining a natural balance in the water, keeping algae at bay, and producing oxygen for fish“.

So there was my “Aha!” moment. There are NO oxygenators in my pond! Not a one. You’d think that the pond maintenance guy would (or should) tell me that? Perhaps? Seeing as he was tasked with the original planting in the pond 3 years ago? Obviously not.

So I’ve been looking for oxygenators at the local nurseries and at last I found some in the Aquarium supplies section. I purchased ten, brought them home and planted them – Best planting experience ever! Just throw in the pond. Finis.

Oxygenator in the baggie …

Oxygenator plant getting “planted” …
Oxygenator getting planted

And now we wait to see how it works on this …
Algae in the pond

Happy Gardening

By Christine

Dominated by large trees on a medium sized property, my garden is very shaded. With no “full sun” areas I have to plant shade and partial shade loving plants. I love shrubs and flowers including camellias and azaleas but Roses and Irises are my favourite and getting these to thrive is a challenge …

14 replies on “Oxygenators for the pond”

30% raise every year for 3 years?!! Fire that guy! 🙂 Ponds are such a wonderful feature of any garden, but can be one of the biggest sources of frustration until everything is worked out. I don’t have oxygenators in my pond because of the pump – they would just get sucked up. I use an ultraviolet light to kill algae. Once you get your pond’s balance worked out, you can spend that pond guy’s money on more water lilies, or other plants!

I’m chuckling away to myself and wondering if the “expensive pond guy” reads your posts. If he does he’ll know he’s on his way out!! 30% – outrageous!

This is a great posting and reminds me of my aim to get a small pond into our own garden knowing what great benefits ponds give to wildlife – thanks very much for picking my latest posting on blotanical – Miranda

Hi, Christine! I’m glad that post helped you with your pond. Those oxygenator plants are the best for reducing algae. I always replenish my supply in spring as the water is warming up, and after just a couple of weeks I get nice, clear water with no chemicals. Happy pond gardening!

Ah, thanks for the info and advice. If I decide to “take the plunge” with a water feature, I will probably be asking you questions. My husband has a huge aquarium, so he’ll have some expertise regarding the oxygenators. But do you recommend any other deep water plants besides water lilies?

I would love a pond but just dont have the room, and love reading about other peoples pond exploits. I know that when you get it right, you will be able to get rid of theat expensive pond guy as the whole eco-system will work on its own. Looking forward to updates.

Christine, it took me a long time to learn how to balance our pond (at our last house, we don’t have one here…yet). You’re right, oxygenating plants can help to make a lot of difference. Here we have to be careful about which species of plant we use though. The Anacharis it looks like you have there, choke our native waterways when they escape the ponds and find their way into local streams. As pond owners we just had to be careful not to dump our pond water during cleanings into the local sewer (I’d water my garden with dirty pond water instead, and with the extra nitrogen from the fish, the plants loved it). I also found it helped to plant something that grows across the surface for blocking some of the excess sunlight, which in turn reduces algae growth, and helps shelter the fish from predators, like herons. Water lilies work great! 😉

Hi Clare – Thanks for that advice – I have two very sad looking water lilies in the pond at present and so am currently growing Lotus Blossom plants from seed (very successfully, much to my surprise) so am hoping that works well and will repot the water lilies and then hopefully they will do better. Would definitely use the water from the pond to water the garden when we empty it.

You did a pond post just to get me excited, right? I’m itching to plant something out there, and have been researching oxygenators and the rest for months. Something tells me I should wait until the ice melts before planting though… 😉

Do you have fish in there? You so rarely talk about your pond.

Hi Alan – yes I have three goldfish. Used to be 3 + one koi, but somebody got hold of the koi and he is no more. We don’t know who somebody was – could’ve been Dexter or Hercules, they were both out there at the time of the crime, looking guilty as sin 🙂

Hehe, I was hoping to watch and learn from you when you start planting next month. I hope its warm enough to start then for you?

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