Annual Pond Care Guide: Spring
Once spring arrives and there is no ice left in your biological filter, skimmer or pipe, it’s time to get your filtration system started. Drain your pond and perform a full pond clean-out with a pressure washer. If you choose to start up your pond without cleaning it, we recommend using Aquascape’s new liquid Pond & Debris Clarifier. Pond & Debris Clarifier oxidizes and kills algae chemically, whether in the waterfall, stream or pond.
Reinstall your filter mats, BioBalls and skimmer components. Connect your pump to the plumbing; turn on the pump to check for leaks and proper flow rate. If the pump is working but there is no water flow, it may be that there is still ice in the pipe. Turn off the pump and try again in a few days.
Jump start your biological filter with Aquascape Pond Starter Bacteria when you open your pond or after a new pond construction. Pond Starter Bacteria, a concentrated blend of lithotrophic bacteria, speeds up the colonization of bacteria responsible for ammonia and nitrogen detoxification, thereby reducing spring fish loss. Treat your pond with Pond Starter Bacteria weekly for two weeks once your daytime temperature is at least 0°C/32°F.
Depending on your pond’s water temperature, you may or may not need to use Aquascape Cold Water Beneficial Bacteria in the spring. If your daytime water temperature is at least 10°C/50°F, you may begin using Aquascape Beneficial Bacteria for Ponds right away. Cold Water Beneficial Bacteria should be used between 5°C/40°F and 10°C/50°F. Add the appropriate bacteria twice weekly for two weeks, followed by once per week thereafter. Don’t forget to start using Aquascape Premium Cold Water Fish Food Pellets from 10°C/50°F.
Monitor the levels of ammonia, nitrite, nitrate and pH in your pond water with test strip kits. If any readings are in the ‘danger zone’, a partial water change is recommended. Don’t forget to use Aquascape Pond Detoxifier.
Get your ionization system operating early so that copper levels have sufficient time to ramp up before the heat of the summer. Test your pond’s copper levels weekly. Add Aquascape Barley Straw Extract during this ramp up phase (or all season for ponds without ionization systems) to discourage string algae growth.
Unseasonably warm spring weather can encourage abrupt nitrifying bacterial activity that can rapidly deplete dissolved oxygen levels in the pond, so it’s important to begin circulating your pond as soon as possible. Have a pond aerator on hand to promote proper gas exchange.
Early spring is the best time to re-pot pond plants. Add Aquascape Pond Plant Fertilizer tablets to water lilies to encourage blooms (and every long weekend including Labour Day). This is also the ideal time to add new plants.