9+ Easy Pond Improvement Hacks
Here is my list of some easy pond improvement hacks.
A pond can be very relaxing and helps to get you in a better mood if you’re having a terrible morning(or afternoon) when you wake up on a cold, rainy morning craving cinnamon rolls, soon to realize your roommate gobbled up the rest of them. (Thanks Cooper)
There are many easy pond hacks to do to help your pond on any given day.
These things will help your pond run more smoothly and ensure your water does not look like green soup, or a fridge containing nothing, not even cinnamon rolls.
Without further adieu, here are some little things you can do to help your pond, on a great day, or… a not so great day.
- Remove debris
- Add plants
- Clean out filter/keep it clean
- Check the water at least once a month
- Increase circulation
- Better quality food
Debris left in the water will eventually start to release harmful chemicals such as ammonia and nitrite. The chemicals add up and can to the water into poison bath for your fish.
There are two simple fixes for this problem install a pond skimmer or just use a net.
Using a pond skimmer automates the work needed to remove debris that falls into your pond.
The hard part is the installation and the price of one. A skimmer is easiest installed during the original construction of the pond when there is no water that can leak.
A skimmer requires that you empty it out once a week and maybe more during the fall months.
If the skimmer is not emptied it can cause a block in the filter and damage the skimmer or pump.
I have had the Aquascape Skimmer for a few years and it has never let me down.
If you don’t want to spend the money or the time installing a skimmer a net can get the job done.
The only set back with a net is that it is manual work, meaning you have to go out to your pond almost every day and remove the fallen debris.
During fall or winter, the number of leaves and other debris can become too much to handle. It may require you to scoop out leaves twice a day.
If debris is left in the pond it will have a negative effect long term on your pond, especially during the fall and winter.
If leftover the fall or winter it will stay at the bottom of the pond and slowly release these chemicals.
But once spring hits and the water starts to warm up the production of ammonia and nitrite go through the roof.
I use a net and a skimmer year-round to prevent any sludge from forming. Sludge forms from the debris that sits at the bottom and decomposes.
My favorite net is the Danner Pond Net, it has a long handle and can reach to the bottom of my ponds.
Plants… ahh. These little green fellas are nature’s gifts. Plants are able to turn a muddy puddle into a muddy pond. Some even have a special superpower, able to oxygenate the water.
These oxygenating plants work by taking in sunlight, then the plants produce oxygen through photosynthesis, the oxygen then releases into the pond water.
This helps all aquatic life in your pond thrive.
When adding plants to your pond, you should consider the plants’ needs. No, you don’t to tuck one special water lily into bed and sing it a nighttime song.
Just try to be mindful of how much sun your aquatic plants require, along with their planting depth.
With pond plants, try to play with the colors. When I built my first pond, I had no clue what colors I liked the best or wanted in my pond. So I decided to take a trip down to my local paintball field to see which color best suited my pond.
Turns out, I was the only one just shooting at the walls, seeing all the paintballs explode with different colors.
My opponents started to shoot at me because they thought I was just some guy who has terrible aim. Before I knew it, my teammates started shooting at me.
So, before I even had a chance to see all the colors, I sprinted off to my car and drove home… disappointed and in pain.
The next day, I woke up, with not 1 but 94 bruises, everywhere. This is probably why I saw a bunch of kids in crazy helmets and gear, as I was in shorts and a tee with no armor.
That week, my bruises started from a light pink to purple. I thought they looked kinda cool(yah, I’m weird) So, that’s how I chose the colors for my pond.
I used black iris(black/purple color) and some pink/purple water lilies.
Another cool thing I recommend when planting your plants is to place the short plants in front of the taller plants, as most people view a pond from a deck or patio.
All in all, make sure you have an assortment of all different types of plants in your pond, variety is the spice to gardening… so don’t be afraid to try new stuff out!
Clean out filter/keep it clean
When most people install their filter, they put in the filter material and never replace it or clean it.
After a few weeks, the filter becomes dirty and needs to be washed. The filter becomes blocked from all the dirt and debris it has caught.
If the filter is not cleaned out it cause the water flow to severely decrease as well as stop filtering the water.
The best filters you have to save you some time are UV filters. These filters are specifically made to remove algae. The set up is easy and definitely worth the time.
The only downside to a UV filter is the amount of money it cost to have and maintain. They range from 85$-300$ depending on what size filter you get.
That does not mention the yearly addition of new UV bulbs and glass chambers.
I have written a full Buyer’s Guide to UV Filters, talking about what size you need, if you need one, and all the advantages vs. the disadvantages.
Check the water at least twice a month
Checking your water is a very undervalued practice. Checking water can tell you everything that is going that you can’t see with your eyes.
It shows you Ph, ammonia levels, water hardness, nitrate, and nitrite. If anyone of these gets out of line, it becomes an invisible problem, and you won’t know till you fish start becoming sick.
By checking your water at least twice monthly it will ensure no invisible dangers will show up in your pond.
I use this API Pond Master Test Kit, it is one of the only kits that allows you to test for pH, ammonia, phosphate, nitrates, and nitrites!
Increasing circulation may be the easiest way to improve the quality of any pond. Without proper circulation, the water can become stagnant and allow for the growth of algae.
One simple way to add circulation is to add an aerator or and underwater fan. All you have to do is plug them in and place them in your pond.
I recommend placing the aerator or fan on the opposite side from where the pump is. This will push the water toward the pump and ensure that the entire pond is being circulated.
Another benefit of adding circulation is that it helps keep your pond cool. If a pond gets too hot it can kill the plants as well as increase the production of algae growth.
If you don’t want to go out and buy a fan or aerator you can use your waterfall. I have written a guide on how to Create The Most Flow From a Waterfall.
Better quality food
Fish food is often overlooked in the pond world. People think you can just buy whatever’s cheapest at a store.
Unfortunately, that is not the case.
Most people buy their fish store-bought pellets or flakes, while that is not bad for your fish, there are so many more types of food to make your fish healthier and make their colors pop.
My favorite, for the past couple of years, has been Koi Vibrance, the name is misleading, it is not just “Koi” food. It’s a food that is incredibly healthy and helps all of your fish colors pop.
Some other options you can include with pellets and flakes are bloodworms, brine shrimp, and peas with the skin removed.
Now sure, you read all this fantastic information on easy pond improvement hacks, now get out there pick one or all of these things to help your pond.
Each one of these won’t take more than a few minutes of your depending on what you are doing, so why not do them all.
The little things will soon add up to be a bigger thing. You will soon have a healthier, happier pond for you to enjoy.
Whether you’re having a great day… or a not so great day.