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Three Factors for Improving Water Quality

Koi Pond

Sunlight, warm temperatures and nutrients can combine to form the “perfect storm” of algae and clarity issues.

Instead of enjoying your beautiful water feature, you may end up spending just as much time trying to keep water clear. The best way to keep water looking pristine is to understand the variables that influence certain conditions.

The first is sunlight. All living organisms, especially plants and algae, need sunlight to survive and grow. Even if your pond is considerably shaded, algae can still grow and reproduce, even rapidly at times.

The second variable is temperature. Temperature naturally encourages growth and increases aquatic life activity. Once temperature raises, algae and bacteria come out of dormancy and begin growing. A good threshold for water temperature is 50º F. Warmer water does not hold as much oxygen as cooler water and can be concerning if algae begins.

Last, but most important, is nutrients. Nutrients are almost always the culprit when it comes to water issues. In a natural pond, there is a balanced ecosystem that can keep itself in check. With backyard water features, you’re shrinking down that ecosystem. Even a slight change can result in huge consequences. Nutrients come from several different sources, most from dead organic material (leaves, dead plants, dead algae) and from fish waste, uneaten fish food and lawn fertilizer run-off after rain.

If you find yourself in a never-ending battle with algae chances are one of these variables mentioned are out of balance.

Keep your water feature as pristine as possible.

Do regular “clean-outs” when the seasons change. Remove leaves, muck and other organic debris that collect at the bottom. Also remove algae that builds up and gets stuck onto rocks and the side/bottom of the pond. GreenClean Granular or GreenCleanFX Liquid Algaecide are ideal. Both are organic and safe for fish and plants. Make preemptive treatments using smaller doses once or twice a week leading up to those times when algae is normally an issue.

If you keep fish in your pond, a good rule of thumb is 10 gallons of water for every inch in length of fish. If you get younger fish, they will grow quickly! You should have an aerator or a waterfall to provide circulation and to add oxygen into the water.

Using beneficial bacteria is very important for water quality. Beneficial bacteria are essential for consuming organic debris (leaves, muck, fish waste) and keeping a balanced ecosystem. Beneficial bacteria occur naturally in water, but it’s recommended to periodically “boost” their numbers. This can be done with GreenClean Liquid Bacteria or GreenClean Bacteria Tablets.

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