Monday, April 28, 2008

Feeding fish

Do not feed goldfish because it turns the pond into an outdoor aquarium, but here's yet another reason not to feed them.

Fish soon realize that when a shape appears at the edge of the pond, food appears. They like that and soon they are trained to eat out of your hand. At least that is what you think.

Fish are not the brightest of critters, so when ANY shape appears at the edge of your pond, like a heron, an egret, a crane or a raccoon, they come up to greet the intruder and oops, they become a fresh sushi dinner for a hungry intruder.

For more pond information, have a look at Backyard ponds with the pondlady

Friday, April 25, 2008

Wild Plants

If you gather plants from the wild, you will bring in parasites and diseases. If you must harvest from the roadside ditches and swamps, first of all, be careful. There are some unpleasant creatures living in those ditches and swamps.

Secondly check local laws, it may be illegal.

Third, put your plants in a washtub or bucket of water with a cup of so of Clorox in it. Leave them there for a week to ten days. That will kill any parasites or other bugs that may have found their way home with you.

Check them well when you put them in your pond for any hitchhiking critters that may have traveled to your house with your new plants.

I find it is often easier to buy the plants from a reputable aquatic nursery or online to assure the plants in your pond are disease and parasite free.

Thursday, April 17, 2008

New Pond Plants

It's time to pot up plants after you have divided them. If your pond is like mine, you have many more plants coming up this spring that you had last fall. So hack them in two or three or four pieces at the bottom and repot them. Here's how:

How to pot up pond plants.

Don't forget you can read more about ponds at
Backyard Ponds with the Pondlady

Tuesday, April 15, 2008

Visiting Wildlife

If you trap visiting wildlife like raccoons, and want to relocate them, check with the Wildlife Commission to see if
1) You have rights to move them to a more suited environment,
2) If they are prone to mark their territory and return,
3) Have the local humane society trap & move them to a more fitting area. 

If they are taken to a brand new neighborhood, they are likely to be unable to find food and die.

Learn more about ponds and get your questions answered at
Backyard ponds with the pondlady

Monday, April 14, 2008

Flower pot pond?

I just got an email asking if a pond could be in a flower pot. I answered that I have had ponds in casserole dishes just to prove it could be done.

So, yes, you can have a pond in a flower pot. Put a couple sprigs of anachris in the water, float some plants on top, have a couple of mosquito fish in it to eat any larvae that want to hatch and you will be fine.

Wednesday, April 09, 2008

Water lily question

I recently introduced 6 fully grown water lilies to my 5000 gal pond. The leaves are starting to yellow and some have small brown/black spots on them. It is a full sun pond with a pump transferring water at rate of 600 gal per hour.

Pondlady sez:

 Water lilies need feeding every 10 - 14 days with Pondtabbs or other aquatic plant fertilizer.
They also like to have the 
tops of their pots at least 18" below the surface of the water and are happier even deeper. 
And remember, the outer ring of leaves gets yellow and needs to be pinched off periodically so the new leaves can grow.
Same with the flowers. They will open and close for about 3 days and then die. Pick them off immediately. Don't let them decay in the pond.
Pinch leaves and flowers off at the pot, not at the top of the water.
Oh, and water lilies do not want water falling on their leaves, nor do they want to be too near moving water. A foot or so away is fine.

Tuesday, April 08, 2008

Fish Fighting?

If you see your fish chasing each other like they are fighting, don't worry, they are not fighting. What you see is fish spawning. You are about have fish eggs, then babies. Fish babies are called fry. And goldfish are not the best parents in the world. They will eat their babies if they can. Goldfish babies are born grayish brown so they cannot be seen as easily be their hungry momma.

To get all your pond questions answered, see
Backyard Ponds with the Pondlady

Saturday, April 05, 2008

Goldfish eggs

There is no set time for goldfish eggs to hatch. The warmer the water, the faster they hatch, so don't worry if some take longer than others.

Goldfish are born blackish, brownish gray and gradually change to orange, gold or other adult colors. They are born dark to escape the parents who will have them for breakfast if given the chance. Not all of them change; some stay the same brownish, blackish color all their lives.

Thursday, April 03, 2008

Turtles and other critters

Critters and ponds go together. When we have a backyard wildlife habitat, we get the critters that come with it. Let's do the best we can do co-exist. You can just not invite most of these critters. The others we just have to live with.

Turtles will eat your water lilies. So will koi, crawfish, bass, perch or other lake fish. Raccoons and nutria will eat them as well. So will ducks and geese. I don't know about possums or muskrats, but I would not be surprised if they did.

Read all about ponds at Backyard Ponds with the Pondlady