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Springtime Care: Opening Your Pond

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Most ponds lie dormant during the winter. If you closed the pond properly in the winter, then opening the pond should be a simple process. However, even if you left your pond exposed all winter, it is still a simple matter to reopen the pond. Avoid burn-out by completing one or two tasks a day, rather than trying to finish opening the pond all in one day.


You pond will probably look something like this before cleaning.

To open the pond you need a few supplies on hand. Make sure to have a pond pump, thermometer, skimming net, large plastic container (at least 200 gallons), soft brush and dust pan, broom, activated carbon filter, pond cleansing bacteria (such as AquaClearer Dry Bacteria), dechlorinator (such as Biocuda™ Re-Vive Dechlorinator Liquid), anti-algae liquid, and fish food.

  • Remove any netting or coverings that you placed over the pool in the fall. If leaves have built up over the cover, sweep them off with an old broom. Shake out the cover and fold it up. Store in a safe place until next fall. Test the temperature of the water. Begin the cleaning process when the water temperature reaches 55 degrees or higher.
  • Inspect the inside of the pond. Note the quality of the water and the depth of leaves or sludge inside the pool. Connect the pump to the pond and turn it on. Pump as much water as possible into the plastic container. Scoop the fish out of the pond with the net and place them in the container.
  • Use the net to scoop as much leaves and sludge out of the pond as possible. Don’t scrape the sides of the pond, as this algae is beneficial and the fish will probably eat it throughout the year. Use a soft brush and dust pant to scrape the bottom of the pond removing stubborn muck and dirt.
  • Check to see if your pond filter is clean. Disconnect the filter and remove all filter media then rinse with a garden hose. Remove all debris from the inside of the filter. It is likely you will have to replace the filter. Remove the filter and replace with an activated carbon filter. This filtration system is the most effective at keeping the pond water clear throughout the year. Submerge the filter inside the pond and turn it on.
  • Pour some liquid or dry bacteria inside the pond. Use approximately one ounce per 10,000 gallons. Pour the water and fish from the plastic container back inside the pond. Use a garden hose to fill the pond to capacity. Pour the dechlorinator liquid into the pond to remove chlorine. Use five ounces per 1,000 gallons of pond water.
Make sure your skimmer is cleaned and turned on.  Add an algae fighting liquid to reduce the presence of algae in the pond.  Start feeding the fish about once a week. If the fish cannot eat all of the food in five minutes or less, then you are over-feeding them. Enjoy your pond!

    A few weeks after cleaning, your pond should   look like this.

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