Showing posts with label pond scum. Show all posts
Showing posts with label pond scum. Show all posts

Monday, April 23, 2012

No More Stinky Pond Goo


I just finished cleaning out one of my ponds and for the first time ever there was no stinky gunk or dead critters at the bottom! 

I am attributing this good fortune to the advice received at about using an aerator during the winter months when the pump is taking a sabbatical. I was really happy NOT to find any dead frogs or fish and no nasty smell meant I could stick my hands in for those last few bits and bobs on the bottom. I even found two very large tadpole-looking critters even though there was no evidence of eggs or other little tadpoles. Not sure how they got there! 

The only sad thing is that the one large fish that was a few years old disappeared. I can only guess that nature did what nature does and either a raccoon or big bird got her.  She left behind 4 offspring... 

I just have one more pond to clean out. Unfortunately the Microbe Lift PL I ordered arrived empty - it burst en route and I feel bad about the packages that it leaked onto - that smell is really awful!

Oh dear, MicrobeLift stinks. Like rotten eggs. They actually brag that if a product does not stink like theirs, it doesn't work. I have found that to be true. 
Glad your pond clean out was easier. 
Those tadpole critters could have arrived on birds' feet or perhaps some indiscreet frogs had a rendezvous in your pond when you were not looking.

My website is full of people who are experienced pondkeepers.  They share their expertise willingly. We have lots of fun there talking about ponds.  Get great design ideas from photos.

I also feature pond questions and answers in my new book available here:

It's number one in Landscaping this morning. Yippee.

So join us at and share your pond stories with us.

Saturday, October 31, 2009

Pond Vacuum Cleaners Redux

I get questions about pond vacs all the time. People want to use a pond vac or a wet vac to clean the bottom of the pond and not have to do a total clean out.  And will that work?  In a word, no.

A pond vac sucks up water.  It sucks up the junk at the bottom of the pond, but it sucks more water than junk.

The other big problem with pond vacs is that they do not have enough suction to reach from the top of the pond where they must sit to the bottom of the pond where the junk is.  Wet vacs are better at this, but still not the best.

 If you want to clean the bottom of the pond and not pump all the water out of the pond first, try this: Go to the swimming pool supply store.  Find a gadget that looks like the picture in the link above.  Do not buy the mesh bag that the salesman wants to sell you. It doesn't work because the mesh is not fine enough.  Also, if you don't already have a telescoping pole for your fish net, buy one of those as well.
When you get the saucer/vacuum cleaner home, attach your garden hose to the fitting on the saucer and a leg from an old pair of panty hose over the hole in the middle of the blue saucer.  You now have a water pressure powered pond vac that will (sorta) clean the pond bottom. At least it will do a better job than the ones you pay lots of big green dollars for.

Put the saucer on the bottom of the pond.  Turn on the water.  If you turn the water on first, you will start the job wet.

Using the pole, which also has a handy place to attach, start vacuuming the bottom of the pond.  The panty hose will fill up fast with all that pond scum on the bottom.  You will quickly have a panty hose leg full of decayed plant material, fish waste and other unspeakable stuff that drops to the bottom of the pond.

When the panty hose leg gets heavy, turn off the water and empty the panty hose leg.  Repeat until the bottom of the pond is as clean as you want it.

By the way, I put a water shut off valve at the saucer end of the hose so I can turn off the water without having to walk back to the hose bib every time.

This is a dirty, messy job.  Wear old clothes and be prepared to shower immediately after.