Archive for the ‘Water Gardening / Water Features’ Category

10 Tips for Fall Pond Care

Aquascape

A nip in the air, shorter days, and the shedding of multi-colored leaves from the trees signifies a changing of the seasonal guard. Gardeners across the country take precautions to protect their landscapes from the harsh reality of winter. Water features in the landscape require special consideration when putting your pond to bed for a long winter’s nap. Pond maintenance chores in the fall and winter vary depending on where you live, but there are some basic guidelines to help your aquatic plants and finned friends weather the chill of Mother Nature. Following is a handy check list to help ensure a healthy pond come spring time.

10 Tips for Fall Pond Care

 

  1. Decaying leaves and foliage produce toxic gases that can harm your fish so you want to remove this debris before winter rolls into town. You don’t need to remove every single last leaf, but try to remove the majority.
  2.  If you put protective pond netting over your pond before the leaves started to fall, your job is easy. Carefully roll up the net and discard the leaves that were caught.
  3. If you didn’t use a net over the surface of your pond, you’ll need to remove the build-up of leaves from the bottom of the pond. Use a long handled pond net to scoop them out. Check your skimmer basket and remove any leaves that are still caught inside.
  4. Add Cold Water Beneficial Bacteria to the pond once the temperature drops below 50 degrees. Use twice weekly for two weeks, and then once per week until the water starts to freeze.
  5. Stop fertilizing your aquatic plants after the first frost.
  6. Trim back hardy marginal aquatic plants to 2″ above the water to keep the dead foliage from drooping over into the pond.
  7. Trim back waterlily leaves and stems to 2-3″ above the base of the plant. This keeps dead foliage from decomposing in the pond.
  8. If you left hardy waterlilies in their pot, drop them into the deepest part of the pond to over-winter. Do not bring them indoors as they need a period of dormancy.
  9. Bring tropical waterlilies indoors if you want to over-winter them. Keep the pot in 50-degree water or take them out of the pot and store in sand. Be advised, even trained horticulturists lose a lot of tropical waterlilies when storing them indoors, so you might simply want to treat them as annuals.
  10. Once temperatures drop to 50 degrees, stop feeding your fish. They need to get ready to hibernate and you’ll want to avoid any metabolic complications. You can feed them Cold Water Fish Food until the temperature drops below 50 degrees.
Posted on: September 9th, 2015 by admin | Comments Off

How Many Fish Can You Add to a Pond?

-by Aquascape Inc.

May 15, 2015

There’s some of us who love fish and collect them like a stack of hot baseball cards! While fish certainly bring joy to any pond, they can also bring headaches to water quality if you go overboard when stocking fish. Too many fish creates an imbalance in the pond’s ecosystem so you’ll want to make sure you are smart about the number and size of fish in your water garden.

Obviously, the pond needs to be large enough to support fish and their growth. Pond fish generally need 10 gallons of water for every inch of their length, and you have to be ready for them to grow larger, so you should be careful not to overstock no matter how tempting this may be! Some pond experts go so far as to recommend only ½ inch of fish per 10 gallons of water as a maximum stocking density.

How Many Fish Can You Add to a Pond?

On occasion, you may encounter ponds crowded with 2 or even 3 inches of fish per 10 gallons of water and the fish seem to be fine. However, the density and ecological strain of this loading turn these ponds into fragile systems. The pH tends to sag, the fish tend to grow more slowly, and disease can become a common occurrence.

It’s very difficult to salvage sick fish in a pond that’s overcrowded. Most likely, Mother Nature will pick off your favorite fish to achieve her ideal stocking density based on the system the fish are in, and then the remainder may recover. So reduce the number of fish if your pond is overstocked.

Posted on: May 26th, 2015 by admin | Comments Off

Ten Popular Pond Plants

-by Aquascape Inc.

Everyone has their favorite collection of pond plants, but there might be some varieties that you haven’t yet added to your water garden. We invite you to consider the following list of popular aquatic plants that make a welcome addition to any pond!

1. Creeping Jenny

10 Popular Pond Plants - Creeping Jenny
Often used as a ground cover in terrestrial gardens, Creeping Jenny fares excellently when used in water gardening applications. Growing approximately 2 inches in height, it’s a great filler to soften edges of rocks with its bright leaves creating a vivid contrast against the cool gray of wet stone. Tiny yellow flowers appear on the plant throughout summer, giving it added appeal. Creeping Jenny is a perennial and best used in Zones 3-10.

2. Pickerel

10 Popular Pond Plants - Pickerel
Available in blue, white, and pink lavender spiked flowers, Pickerel is a great choice for ponds with its shiny, green heart-shaped foliage. The blooms are long lasting and create a beautiful display when planted in masses. It grows about 24-30″ in height and performs well in Zones 4-10.

3. Horsetail

10 Popular Pond Plants - Horsetail
Horsetail Reed provides a striking architectural presence in your pond with its segmented reeds, growing to 24″in height, while the dwarf version grows to 8″. Hardy to Zone 4, it’s a fast spreader and you’ll want to thin the plant in the summer. In the fall, cut the plant all the way down to the ground to keep the spores from spreading.

4. Taro

10 Popular Pond Plants - Taro
Several varieties of Taro are available for your pond and do well in full to part sun. This is a tropical plant suited for Zones 8-11, but colder climes can bring the plant inside during the winter months. This impressive, leafy water lover grows to about 48″ and always makes a striking appearance in the water garden.

5. Cardinal Flower

10 Popular Pond Plants - Cardinal Flower
Plant this pretty flower along the shallow edges of your pond and watch the birds flock to it. Deep burgundy foliage sets off the vibrant red flowers. The leaves are up to 8″ long and the plant can grow as tall as three feet. Cardinal Flower performs best in Zones 5-9.

6. Water Lettuce

10 Popular Pond Plants - Water Lettuce
Water Lettuce produces fuzzy, lime-green rosettes of leaves that look like little floating heads of lettuce. Super easy to grow, you simply let this plant float on the surface of the water with its roots dangling below. They produce babies throughout the summer and can be shared with friends or moved to container water gardens. Hardy in Zones 9-11.

7. Mosaic Plant

10 Popular Pond Plants - Mosaic Plant
The beautiful Mosaic Plant consists of red and green diamond-shaped leaves in 3-6″ wide rosettes. In the summer, this floating plant produces sunny yellow cup-shaped flowers. Easy to grow, the plant provides a place for your finned friends to hide underneath. A tropical plant, Mosaic is hardy in Zones 11-12.

8. Blue Iris

10 Popular Pond Plants - Blue Iris
Many water gardeners enjoy the elegant splendor of the aquatic iris, which is among the first plants to bloom in the spring. Aquatic irises comprise such a large and diverse group – there are literally hundreds, if not thousands of cultivated and natural hybrids. The Blue Flag Iris is a native plant that can grow up to four feet tall! A wetland lover, the Blue Flag’s large flowers are breathtaking, ranging in shades from pale blue to purple.

9. Sweet Flag

10 Popular Pond Plants - Sweet Flag
Also known as golden Japanese sweetflag (Acorus gramineus ‘Ogon’), this plant is ideal for containers and water gardens alike. It’s extremely flexible, as it can be grown with its toes in the water or partially submerged. The beautiful foliage is light green and highlighted with bright yellow stripes, remaining beautiful all season and sometimes through the winter. An all-around great plant that adds a bright, cheerful spot to any water feature!

10. Waterlilies

10 Popular Pond Plants - Waterlilies
Waterlilies are stunning creatures in the water garden and often the reason why many gardeners add a pond to their landscape. These beauties are characterized by amazing flowers representing all colors in the light spectrum … red, orange, yellow, green, blue, indigo and violet (including the collective white), and a number of shades in between.

The flowers range from a mere 2″ in diameter to some blooms measuring 12″ or more. Their leaves typically float unless they’re crowded, and are more or less round, ranging from 2″ across to over 6 feet for the giant Victoria. Waterlilies are perennial and can be broken down into 2 basic groups; hardy and tropical.

Posted on: May 18th, 2015 by admin | Comments Off

Weekly Special for the Week of September 22

~Weekly Special~

September 22-27, 2014

10% off fall Pond Products!

Aquascape's How To Prepare Your Pond for Fall and Winter

Aquascape’s How To Prepare Your Pond for Fall and Winter

Posted on: September 22nd, 2014 by admin | Comments Off

Preparing for Cooler Temperatures

-by Aquascape

 IN THE FALL, temperatures begin to drop around the country. Being prepared for every different season Mother Nature throws our way helps us help our ponds cope with the changes. Learn how to manage your pond whether you live in a warmer southern climate or a chilly northern climate.

PONDERING IN THE NORTH

SUMMER IN MANY PARTS OF THE NORTH is just as warm as it is in the south. When fall comes knocking on our door, we usually welcome the crisp, cool air and beautiful fall foliage. Most however don’t welcome what follows fall … winter, snow, and cold! It’s the snow and cold that we need to prepare our ponds and fish for. What you do now, in the fall, will have an effect on the health and survival of your fish throughout the winter.

Leaves

When the leaves begin to fall and blow, cover the water’s surface with a net to catch them. The net discourages the debris build up on the pond bottom, which would otherwise decompose, create toxic gasses, and prove harmful to the fish during their hibernation period.

Pond Net

Fish

Watch for the 55°F mark. Before that time, avoid missing any fish feedings because the fish are in the process of packing on nutrition, and getting ready to hibernate. But when the temp starts to regularly dip below 55°F, it’s a sure sign to stop feeding your fish because their metabolisms have slowed down to a point that they can no longer handle the nutrition safely.

Plants

At this time, dying foliage of your aquatic plants should be removed. This helps to minimize debris build up on the pond bottom. If you have potted tropical aquatic plants that you want to save for next season, this is the time to remove them from the pond, and take them indoors for the winter.

Posted on: August 18th, 2014 by admin | Comments Off

The Lovely Lotus

Check out these pictures to see just what a lotus can add to your pond!

The Lovely Lotus

I’m in love with the lotus. Is there any other aquatic plant as beautiful or graceful? It belongs to the genus Nelumbo and consists of only two species … the yellow-flowered American lotus (Nelumbo lutea) and the pink Asiatic lotus (Nelumbo nucifera). These two species have been grown and bred for centuries, resulting in hundreds of hybrids that range in size and color.

In my mind … this is what Heaven looks like.

The delicate intricacy blends the beauty of pink and yellow. {Dreamy Sigh}

The highly popular ‘Momo Botan.’ It’s easy to see why this is the best-selling lotus in the US. It reminds me of a cabbage rose or peony.

A sea of waterlilies provides the perfect backdrop for this regal lotus.

The outer petals of the ‘Shiroman’ appear like tissue cradling the flower.

The ‘Empress’ aka Alba Striata, is white with light red streaks. Stunning!

Even the lotus pod has a beauty all its own.

The seeds can be stored and replanted. The immature seeds are considered a delicacy by the Cajuns of southern Louisiana and are delicious eaten raw.

Even the waxy leaves of this amazing plant are breathtaking.

Look how large some of the leaves get!

Even the undersides of the leaves are beautiful. Oh, to be a frog and enjoy this view every day!

A yellow-flowered American lotus provides a striking contrast against the deep green leaves.

Even the buds are beautiful. This plant captivates the heart and soul at every stage of growth.

You can grow these amazing beauties in a container … so no need to fret if you don’t have a water garden. A great book to help you get started is About the LotusI just potted my first lotus in a large aquatic container and placed it in a sunny location in my yard. I check on it daily! The first leaf is already 6-inches in diameter. I’m taking photos of its growth and will post them once it has a few blooms. Can’t wait!

-Aquascape Your Landscape
Posted on: June 21st, 2014 by admin | Comments Off
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