My pond project is under way

For discussion of water based garden features, including ponds, waterfalls, landscaping with water, and the plants that live in the water.
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applestar
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My pond project is under way

Post by applestar »

:-()

...spent the morning digging my little pond. I had started working on it this spring, but aborted due to being overwhelmed by other gardening chores and heat. So it just needed to be cleared of weeds, dug a little more and shaped, and pond liner laid out.

This is a project that has been off and on or several years now. You might wonder why I would be digging a pond now just before winter. Part of the problem with it has been that other times of the year, it's impossible.

- Late winter-Early spring, the ground and any moisture/water in the half dug dimple in the ground was frozen. Tried and gave up several times.
- spring time turned out I was too busy with other stuff. But I was also concerned about disturbing praying mantis egg casings, etc. That I had spotted in there.
- early summer - by this time, the weeds had taken off and the area had to be cleared, and everything looked too daunting. Lots of planting and gardening to get everything growing well were going on, too.
- summer was too hot -- I could barely get what needed to be watered and weeded and harvested done before I was overcome from heat prostration. Plus there were milkweed growing really well that I wanted to keep growing for the Monarch butterflies
- fall -- that entire area was lush with goldenrod, flea bane, and stinging nettle. Carelessly trying to pull weeds got me stung several times.


- late fall - NOW - was perfect. A couple of hard frosts had killed off tender annuals and it was much easier to see what was growing, beneficial insects like bees, wasps, spiders, are mostly gone and with the weeds that were left to mostly sticks, it was for praying mantis egg casings.

Today, it was 50's cold, but warm enough for digging in short sleeves. :()
-- photo from upstairs window --
image.jpg


Too exhausted now to do anything else, but I'll fill with water in the next couple of days to make sure the pond liner in mostly positioned the way I want, then I can bury the edges and put more rocks around it.

I'll think about additional features like waterfall and the little recirculating stream I want to connect to it, skimmer filter, etc. next spring.

Would it be better to cover this with bird netting to keep out leaves and debris, or would that be more trouble than it's worth and it's not that big a deal to scoop out debris, etc. later?
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Re: My pond project is under way

Post by imafan26 »

Did you underlay the pond with sand and build that ridge (I don't remember what it is called. It is like a little shelf that goes around the perimeter of the pond.?

If it freezes there are you going to let the pond freeze over in winter or are you going to heat it?

I thought about doing a pond years ago, but I settled for a fountain instead. I did buy a horse trough as swimming pool for the dog. He loved it and jumped in and out of it and got it all muddy. We only bought the small one, the bigger one was to too big to move and store.
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Re: My pond project is under way

Post by rainbowgardener »

The little pond with waterfall and stream is exactly what I am envisioning for a water feature for my yard. It will be a next year project though.
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Re: My pond project is under way

Post by applestar »

Imafan -- Not sand but other stuff including a folded twice old blue tarp that was all torn up on one side.

Also smoothed the shelves and steps with my bare hands after shaping and digging, and, after laying out the liner, walked all over it in socks to feel for anything pokey (and got underneath to dig them out). Hopefully, that was enough. :bouncey:


Looking forward to seeing/reading about your pond project in spring, rainbowgardener :wink:
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Re: My pond project is under way

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Here are some more pictures. Looking them over, I've decided I want to dig a larger shallow shelf on one side where the pond liner bunches up way too much and needed to be folded. If I do this right, I could edge the shelf with rocks and fill with pebbles or gravel for rooting shallow/bog plants.
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Re: My pond project is under way

Post by rainbowgardener »

You are always leading the way, applestar! It will be beautiful!
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Re: My pond project is under way

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Thanks, rainbowgardener. I'm really excited to get this back burner project started.

Here's the new look. It's funny because I was hurting all over when I woke up, but thinking about how I wanted to modify it got me motivated. I was really happy with the new shape, but looking over these new photos, I started thinking maybe I want to shape it a little bit more.... :roll: :lol:

image.jpg


Another thing is while I'm in there, digging away, the pond feels pretty big and certainly big enough for what I have in mind. But as soon as I'm back inside looking at it from upstairs window and at the photos, it starts to feel too small. :> I have to remind myself that I need to save enough extra liner for the bio-filter/waterfall area on the far side.

In one or two of the photos, you can see the pre-formed waterfall that I want to use as sourcepoint for the recirculating stream. I'll get another liner that will be cut into strips for the streambed.


I also want to direct overflow from a rainbarrel to supply the pond, and also have ideas about setting up and thing in an outdoor aquaponics experiment, too. The pond was the major anchor element for the overall BIG project, so you can see why I'm just bubbling over. Next season is going to be so much FUN! :-()
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Re: My pond project is under way

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So... I've been searching for small pond images to get some ideas on how to put together the waterfall end and how to finish it overall to hide the liner, etc. ...and oh wow I feel like I'm looking at a bunch of spam telling me to "BUY A TRUCKLOAD OF ROCK$"

Yeah I have a few rocks of various sizes and shapes -- some big enough to need a hand truck or roll with effort one massive push at a time to move -- but not remotely natural in a group because the rocks are made of different geologic materials and sources.

But point being I have to buy them because they are not naturally occurring in this area.

It would look really odd to have a huge pile of rocks.

I think I will try to think of ways to incorporate some logs. I'll try to get some rounds after a wind storm when people cut up downed trees. This time of the year, most of them are cut up into firewood so I'm not sure how much I will find, but they are offered for free or for some $ on Craigslist all the time.

It might take some time to get it all the way I want, but I don't need an instant pond... Part of the fun is in the creative process. :D
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Re: My pond project is under way

Post by rainbowgardener »

I agree the huge pile of rocks looks odd and the pond with the one row of rocks all the way around it looks totally unnatural:

Image
http://breath.laravelez.com/wp-content/ ... talled.jpg

did anyone ever see a natural pond with one row of rocks neatly lined up around it?

The solution of course is plantings. We had a little artificial pond at our Cincinnati house, one of the rigid preformed ones. Unfortunately, I don't think I ever thought to take its picture. It had a few rocks at the waterfall area and a couple more in other parts of the edge. But mostly the edge was disguised with plantings. It had a lilac tree and a japanese maple at one end and the lilac extended out over it. Next to the J. maple was a gold euonymus that was spreading and trailing:

Image

(I know euonymus, ugh, non-native invasive. But all of this was in a large raised bed; it couldn't go anywhere. The burgundy red maple behind the gold euonymus was very pretty. Over time the euonymus crept out over as well as along the pond edge. ) Then there were various plantings around the edge, mixed in with a few rocks. I think it looked much more natural than just the row of rocks.
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Re: My pond project is under way

Post by imafan26 »

Most of the ponds I saw, they try to get most of the wrinkles out of the liner and then they cut it when they have the final shape. The edges are often stacked with stone. The waterfall end usually has stones stacked higher and the tubing run up between the stones. I have even seen some larger stones that actually are shaped so they can be used specifically for water features. There is usually something for the overflow. Most decorative ponds are set on higher ground or with higher edges because you don't want yard runoff in the pond or it will get muddy and become more like a settling pond. Most fish don't like muddy water or an overflowing pond. You will need to either run a pump or have fish in the pond to keep the water from becoming stagnant. A ledge for bog plants will help to transition the edge of the pond.
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Re: My pond project is under way

Post by rainbowgardener »

The edges are usually stacked with stone. That's the look I was objecting to, just a ring of stone around the little pond. Sometimes they end up looking like swimming pools or even bathtubs.

If there is extra liner that extends out beyond the pond edge, you can just bury it. That will create a boggy area for wetland plants.

Here's a picture of someone making a bog area next to his pond. The bog wouldn't have to be that big or deep:

Image

For the bog, they poked a few holes with garden fork to allow water to seep out and then put gravel in the bottom to keep the holes from getting clogged.

It's hard to even find a picture of a pond with edges hidden by plantings instead of rock, done well. Some of the pictures show just a green ring around the pond, like all planted with green hosta or dwarf boxwood. That is almost as boring as the rock ring.

Here's one:

Image

It's more lush and busy and hides the pond more than mine was. Part of the edge, I just had hardy geranium planted next to. That meant in winter the pond edge reappeared, but we weren't out looking at it much in winter anyway. In the growing season, the hardy gerania made nice little mounds that just covered the edge, but didn't hide the pond.
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Re: My pond project is under way

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Rainbowgardener, Imafan, thank you for all the ideas. As you might imagine, my mind is a-buzz ! :-() I wish I could go ahead and finish. Rainbow, that 2nd photo of natural looking plants surrounding a pond looks beautiful! :D

As it is, after looking up winterizing recommendations, I decided to fill the pond while I had the chance. Once everything freezes, I wouldn't be able to properly fill the pond until April, I would guess. Also, the pond liner would be stiff from the cold, etc. and it would get mucky and some of the flexibility might be lost after weathering.

Consulting the weather forecast convinced me that it HAD TO BE DONE TODAY. :shock:

image.jpg


...and -- whoo! -- it was cold enough! By the time I called it quits, my hands were freezing and my back and right leg were spasming, but I DID IT! :clap:

image.jpg


Hopefully the rocks and bags of gravel I put on the edges will be enough to keep the liner in place. I ran the pump while filling with water and for a while after, but the recommendation for once winter freeze is on the way Is to take it out and put an oxygenating aerator pump in, so I tossed in my AACT disk airstone attached to the aquarium pump which I just recently cleaned.

I'll work on getting a pond-sized air pump later. (The pond is looking much BIGGER now that it is filled with water and you can see the entire surface area.... 8) )

There was a minnow in a tub that will have frozen in the upcoming mid-20's temp, so I put it in the pond though I didn't get the chance to properly get it fish-ready. Minnows are tough, so hopefully it will be OK. I have three goldfish that are currently living in a 10-gal bucket that will be moved into the pond as well. That bucket (without fish) froze solid last winter. :shock:
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Re: My pond project is under way

Post by imafan26 »

Looking good. Now that the hard work is done you can start planning how you are going to plant and finish the pond. It does look bigger with the water. I would put a fence or something around it because if it were me, I would not see it and fall in. I used to step into the holes that my terrier liked to dig in the yard all of the time and It hurt and they weren't even that deep.
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Re: My pond project is under way

Post by rainbowgardener »

Yay!!! terrific work!


No, no fence, you want it to be part of your landscape. Really, imafan, it's a lot easier to miss the little terrier holes than to miss noticing a big pond. :)
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Re: My pond project is under way

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I mean only temporarily. Some places ponds are treated like swimming pools and fencing or barrier is required. Once it is covered with ice and snow it may not be that easy to find.
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Re: My pond project is under way

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Yep. The pond is within code.

My entire backyard is fenced so only ones who might fall in are trespassers who climbed the fence to cross our property in the dark. :shock:

...good point about the snow though...
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Re: My pond project is under way

Post by Susan W »

These efforts and pics have jogged me to think again about a water feature. As it happens, having my yard guy clean out some areas. Where I would cut off saplings, he digs out stuff which of course is much better! Long and short, I have a couple of areas to re-group. One area in mind, East side, kinda a triangle, 6 x 4 at widest. I was thinking of low maintainence native flowers anise hyssop, coneflower, milkweed (swamp), columbine etc. all pollinator magnets. Then thinking POND!
Pond is easy part as I am looking at a rigid preformed. Then the pump. Power......oh, one needs power! That could mean an electrician to put in an exterior outlet. (project just got more expensive!) I have one exterior outlet total on whole house. Last year had thought about one further from house, and power a real problem there, plus I wouldn't be paying as much attention and enjoying it as closer to house.

OK, back to Apple's pond......
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Re: My pond project is under way

Post by rainbowgardener »

Yes. I have the same power issue. Also only have one exterior outlet, next to the back door. We already want to have an electrician add more outlets on our deck. After that, choices would be to have the electrician run power out to where the pond will be OR just get outdoor extension cord, plug it in to a deck outlet and run it out to the pond ourselves, burying it.

There are solar powered pumps, which are great for fountains (and which I will probably have in my bird bath), but I don't know if there are any heavy duty enough for this application.

Applestar, do you already have power for your pond pump?
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Re: My pond project is under way

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I'm currently using an extension cord from the outdoor outlet by the back door. I need to get a clamshell protector or wrap the connection points with duct tape to protect from moisture/freezing, though most of the cord and connection are all raised up off the ground.

(The air pump is currently sitting on a brick with holes under an upside-down galvanized watering can which had lost the pour spout, and I've arranged the liner underneath to drain into the pond so water shouldn't puddle there)

I ran the AACT aerator all summer and only had the GFI pop two times when severe hurricane remnant/tropical storm passed through, but I think freezing will be more of an issue during the winter.

I'll have a better idea how many outlets I will need after the pond is completely finished.
Ultimately, I would love to set up a good sized solar panel/battery backup system to run the pond, so I will be noodling about that over the winter.

...this is not a new photo, but there NEEDS to be a picture of the pond on this page :> ...

image.jpg


This morning, I realized that the pond water reflects morning sun onto the ceiling of the GREEN ROOM and the front room beyond, making those room brighter :() The pond location was also designed to be the feature view from one of the bedrooms (and I keep going in there, just to look :lol: )

Also, I woke during the night last night and HAD to look out of my window because it was unusually bright outside -- then realizing it was an enchanting full moon night, so bright, almost like daytime the way you could see EVERYTHING, I ended up going around looking out of all the windows until I woke up my DD. We then snuck into the bedroom overlooking the pond to look at it together, giggling the whole while. :wink:
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Re: My pond project is under way

Post by Susan W »

Apple, the pond is looking fine! Curious here, about what is size - length, width, and depth in deepest part.
I am looking more towards the rigid liner. This especially after seeing pics of all the folds in your sheet liner. That to me spells trouble with a capital T, with cooties and cruds too numerous to mention. I'll be checking out the solar power paks as well.
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Re: My pond project is under way

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... I haven't measured it yet ... (You know me.... ) Image

I did have an idea when I originally dug the spot a couple of years ago and this spring, but this time, I dug to the depth allowed by code (18 inches) and shaped the shelves as fancy struck and soil condition and roots allowed -- some places, I thought I got it dug the way I wanted, then found a root which --when I pulled out enough to be out of the way and not cause trouble-- made the soil crumbly and I had to dig and shape some more.

After the first day, when I saw that I had extra liner, I dug some more areas and also created that wide shelf.

If it helps, the liner is 10 ft x 15 ft.

I'm remembering though, that originally, I intended to cut strips off the liner for the meandering stream, but now I've used up the available liner to the full with just enough to spare to cover the waterfall area after I shape and build. So I'm thinking about what to use for the stream. Maybe I have something like an old inflatable toy that I could cut up. 8)

In my vision, it's a tiny little pebble and gravel-lined trickle that will be coming from that pre-formed waterfall... Maybe a little wide marshy bio-filtration bog area that I *might* make with the purple dinosaur sandbox/kiddy pool (the lid might come in handy for something too....), then into the pond from side of the waterfall. Image

FWIW, I did think about using a pre-formed/rigid pond liner -- BTW, I'm seeing a LOT of them on Craigslist right now Around here for good price though not free... Even someone in my town who is moving and selling his koi fro $25 and up, though I'm not going to jump on that. I need to practice with easy fish so my surviving 3 feeder goldfish and the minnow -- that all lived through the summer unfed by me in unfiltered, unaerated buckets and a tub as mosquito control will be enough for now.

But way back when I started thinking about it, I realized I might not be able to dig a *prescribed* hole. Judging by the organic way my digging process went, I think I was right. Of course you would make a bigger hole, fill with sand cushion, plunk the pool liner in and fill some more, but I liked making my own shelves. It helped that my soil is very clay-y and the moisture/consistency was just right -- a lot of it was like sculpting.
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Re: My pond project is under way

Post by rainbowgardener »

It's strange. I looked back through hundreds of garden photos and could not find a single one of our pond. I don't know why, since I thought it turned out pretty (after a few years! :) ) If I'm back in Cinti in the spring, maybe I'll try to get a couple.
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Re: My pond project is under way

Post by Susan W »

Good news, hopefully, on power for pumps. Solar packs are readily available, and within budget. I did a brief google search, and choices too numerous to mention. My son, who stays with me, had said power least of my problems, and pointed to the solar powered pumps all over the Ark delta (rice and more). Side note, he's looking to solar panel the house this winter.
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Re: My pond project is under way

Post by rainbowgardener »

Wow terrific... about the ponds and about your house. We want to put solar panels on our house when we can, but still so pricey. What I've been told is expect about $4000 per Kw capacity. " On average the total cost of solar installation can be between $15,000 to $29,000 for average sized systems sized between 4kW and 8kW" http://www.cit.com/middle-market/common ... affd:35584

Even going with the lower end $15 K still seems like pretty big bucks and twice that would be prohibitive.....
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Re: My pond project is under way

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Initially there were rebates from the government and the local utility company to install solar panels. Most homes take about 18-20 panels , so about $20,000 and since it is expensive to take down you have to make sure your roof will last about as long as the panels will. With the rebates and tax breaks most people in the early days only ended up paying about $2000 for their system and with the utility buying back the electricity, they were only paying like $8 a month.

Now, the utility does not like all the lost revenue because they are trying to upgrade their system now which they should have not waited until it was so decrepit. We pay the highest utility bills around. They even charge just to keep the account open even if no one is living in the house and using electricity. They have changed the rules. People who want to put up solar now have a hard time because they have limited the number of solar systems to 10% and some communities have already hit the limit. Now, any new systems are getting a different deal. The utility will only pay half as much for electricity their panels generate and will charge a higher base charge so it won't be $8 anymore. The people who had the panels in before the deadline will be grandfathered in at the old rate, but if any of those homes want to add additional panels they will be charged the new rate.

It is fairer to those people who do not have solar systems who the utility has been raising rates to pay for infrastructure improvements every 6 months. Most of the people who have solar panels are working during the day or out and don't use as much energy when the panels are generating it. The electric company though takes that power and sells it to everyone else at diesel fuel generator prices. At night, when people are home cooking, bathing, and have all the lights and other electronic equipment on their solar panels are off and they are actually using their solar credits but getting their power from the utility's diesel generators. It is more equitable for the solar users to have to pay a portion of the utility infrastructure costs. It is unfair that the non- solar users are being charged generator rates when the utility is distributing solar energy.
I don't have a system because my electric bill is under the break even point and it would take 20 years or the life of the system for me to break even. I use very little electricity. Most of my bill comes from the 2 refrigerators, chest freezer, 2 water heaters, washer and dryer. I haven't used the whirlpool tub in a long time. I use the microwave oven more than I use the stove.
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Re: My pond project is under way

Post by applestar »

Ah. That's interesting imafan. I noticed there are also companies now that "lease" solar panels and associated systems for whole house use with promise to upgrade them (sometimes at their cost) as technologies improve. But I haven't done any of the research so I don't know how cost effective (or not) that would be.

Only experience I have with solar garden objects are the path lights on stakes. I think maybe the rechargeable AA batteries need replacing after a while -- I have old ones with yellow lights (incandescent?) that don't work anymore that the batteries are exposed (and could be replaced?) and new LED/white lights ones that seem to be encased and I don't see a way to change the batteries, but I haven't seriously looked or tired to take one apart.

Also I have tried using the floating "lily pad" fountain with solar panel surface. One went bad a while back -- I think water got into the electrical connection -- and the 2nd one's tiny pump seized up when my little tub pond went dry because the fountain threw all the water out. It hasn't been used for a couple of years but I'm going to dig it out and see if that still works with a new pump.

My Dad has a better version with an external solar panel about the size of a printer paper. It has worked well and is charming when the sun is on the solar panel (which he sets on a easel) but he does has to go out and change its direction to face the sun full on. Without a battery, this one ONLY runs when the sun is directly shining on the panel at optimal angle. But I would want a system that can maintain the pumps and any other pond electricals 24/7.

I haven't seriously looked for anything new for the garden for a couple of years but brief glimpses seem to indicate solar technology and products have improved (more than just novelty, more useful, better designed as a system) somewhat recently and I'm seeing a fair number of panel/battery system kits for using in sheds, RV's, bigger systems with inverter, etc. for remote cabins, etc. So that's where I'll start.
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Re: My pond project is under way

Post by Susan W »

Just a couple of notes here. For your pond, just google solar power for pond (fountain, water garden), and choices are near endless, and affordable. These are not your little yard light posts solar thingies. I am sure home gardeners are benefiting from technology developed for agricultural use.

As for solar panels on house, it gets a bit more complex. Of course the utility company is counting on your check every month to pay its bills. Any rebates or encouragements vary from state to state, power source and local company. Many states have their heads in the sand, TN among them, and power co needs $. Our electric is TVA, and comes through our local company. Our 'light bill' is connected to city, Memphis light, gas, water. We pay one bill (itemized) for elect, gas (natural gas), water, sewer, trash, rat and mosquito control, storm drain. In looking at a light bill, August had about 1800 kwh electric (highest month with the air conditioning).
Have fun!
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Re: My pond project is under way

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Thanks SusanW! Solar-powered pond research will be my winter armchair project. :bouncey:

It got warmer today, and I put the goldfish in. Of the three remaining goldfish, one seems to be having trouble -- maybe sick. The other two always swim together and they completely explored the pond, but the 3rd one stayed near the surface, hardly moving. At one point, I saw a dark shadow following the the twins -- apparently they came across the minnow, alive and well, and it followed them up to the surface. :D

image.jpg


The little air pump is working well so far. The sub freezing temps for the last three mornings seems to have helped to really clarify the water 8)
image.jpg
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Re: My pond project is under way

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Wanna have another look? I was playing with my "waterfall" :P

image.jpg


...saw all three goldfish swimming around. No way to spot the minnow unless it's all the way up in the shallows because it's completely camouflaged.
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Re: My pond project is under way

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Subject: Backyard bird and butterfly (and dragonfly too) watching

applestar wrote:This morning, a Yellow Rumped Warbler was drinking from the hole in the ice. Beautiful bright lemon yellow markings on the rump and sides under the wings. I wish I could take photos, but it's too hard when I'm peering between frosted panes on the window.

I did go outside and take photos of the frozen pond :D

Image


This morning, I looked out the window and was concerned to see no bubbles. Then I went outside, and realized the pond had frozen over completely. In fact it looked frozen down to the first shelf -- at least 4-5 inches deep. I even walked out onto the ice over the shelf, though I wasn't brave enough to go out over the deep part.
image.jpg


...but when I went out in the late afternoon, the ice had melted quite a bit:
image.jpg


...which was a good thing because shortly before sunset, DH came home from fishing with some left over baitfish -- golden shiners:
image.jpg
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Re: My pond project is under way

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The pond had frozen solid across several times in the deep freeze, and I was concerned about whether it had frozen to the bottom, whether the fish had survived... but yesterday, I saw one goldfish and one minnow/shiner? twice as big as the goldfish swimming around. Image

The goldfish spotted me first and quickly dashed to hide underneath a sunken fall leaf, then a few moments later, the minnow started swimming around as if in a panic... and I kid you not! the goldfish emerged a little way outside of the leaf, and the minnow streaked to the goldfish and they both dived under the leaf. :o

...but the bigger minnow could only get the front half of its long body under the leaf, with the tail end frantically wriggling but not getting any further. :roll:

It was a CLASSIC cartoon moment. :lol:
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Re: My pond project is under way

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The pond ice has melted and the ground is starting to thaw -- I can't wait to get started :-()
I haven't been able to spot the fish, but DD SAID SHE SAW THREE :D

image.jpeg


There are a few of these long strands of filamentous algae growing in there. I know they can become "weeds" of the pond, but I'm not sure if I should remove them NOW while they are still only few, or I should leave them as possible food source for the fish.... :|
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Re: My pond project is under way

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So excited! Image

I came across a mention of using air pump to pump water up through a tube. The blog showed pictures and video of a crude tubing set up spitting squirts of water.

But when I searched for more information, I found out it does much more than that Image and is probably my answer to the costs (energy and $) of natural bog filter pump, waterfall pump and air pump, etc. as well as my budding idea to use the pond and rain barrel waters for aquaponics-inspired, rain gutter SIP system and vertical wall garden that will all require water to be pumped up, sometimes quite high in terms of vertical lift. All ideas I've been noodling in the back of my mind, and desperately trying to consolidate into inter-connected systems using gravity for water transport to reduce number of pumps.... :|

This website has an associated forum but I believe it is OK to mention since it's a specialized forum. I'm definitely going to tinker with these designs this year. In the second video, it was mentioned that the airlift system can also work as protein skimmer, which should be another bonus that I will understand and appreciate more once I learn more.

Airlift.eu

Introduction to airlift pump - YouTube



https://youtu.be/TOVZ4oklBFw

Airlift: How to build - Part one - YouTube



https://youtu.be/SZGaYHJSVLM
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Re: My pond project is under way

Post by imafan26 »

That type of algae is very bad remove it. It is like long strands of hair and it clogs things up.
Happy gardening in Hawaii. Gardens are where people grow.

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Re: My pond project is under way

Post by j3707 »

That airlift pump is a great idea.

Thanks for sharing your ideas and research applestar 8)
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Re: My pond project is under way

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You are welcome. I'm just passing along the ideas that are out there to share. I love it that there are so many innovative folks out there that are willing to share these great ideas and experiments. I'd love to see what everybody else comes up with based on these concepts. :D

I revisited that "spitter" concept, and found these. I can see how this super simple design can be useful for automatic drip irrigation like he is using :-()

Nano Airlift Pump Challenge! BEAT THIS to be Champion! And World record holder! - YouTube


https://youtu.be/lKtB1YKoMxk


Airlift pump in a bucket! 5 month old technology, Already in use in Denmark, Canada France, USA - YouTube


https://youtu.be/8pI31ZwEL40
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Re: My pond project is under way

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I'm not ready to do much major work, but I got the turtle spitter spitting today using a tiny air pump that came with a plastic gum ball machine aquarium. It really is just spitting a squirt of water every 4-5 seconds and tiny 1-2 second spits in between, but better this than just sitting there being a statue and NOT spitting :lol:

image.jpeg
image.jpeg (49.76 KiB) Viewed 1393 times


The pump I attached to the fountainhead is the one I used to use with the turtle and between being underpowered and due to a missing tight fitting adapter, it can't do much more than dribble. :roll: I need to find a reducer -- maybe that will help to get it to do something more interesting... Or I will just have to use this pump for something else.
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Re: My pond project is under way

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Subject: 2016 -- starting seeds and cuttings for the new season

applestar wrote:Sooo excited! :-() -- I took my mom shopping at H-Mart (a Korean/Asian grocery store) and they had a newly opened crate of lotus roots packed in moist wood shavings, some still joined in links like sausages. I grabbed the one with some roots still on the joint.

They also had fresh water chestnuts on sale probably because they were deteriorating -- some were shriveled and some were ... starting to sprout :D I picked the biggest sprouting ones :()

I'm going to try to get them started in a bucket for growing in my pond. 8)


Subject: 2016 -- starting seeds and cuttings for the new season

applestar wrote:I just checked and these water chestnuts look like they grew some more in the produce bag and want to grow the most right now so I put them in this tray where I was watering the tomato and pepper seedlings for now -- I'll find a smaller container for them later. :bouncey:
I still have to find out the best way to start the lotus roots in a bucket of water... Does anyone know?

Image


...they are greening up already under the lights :D
image.jpeg



...found a couple of informative articles...

Lotus Care Sheet - International Waterlily & Water Gardening Society
http://iwgs.org/lotus-care-sheet/

Lotus Planting & Growing Instructions
http://texaswaterlilies.com/Lotusplanti ... owing.html

I'm floating one of the lotus roots in a bucket of water in an upstairs bedroom wher it will be warm to get it started -- hopefully this isn't too early.
image.jpeg


...I was searching on-line for possible lotus growing containers, then went outside and almost tripped over a dark green, sturdy plastic tub -- a tool bin that was inside a hose reel box that broke. It's the perfect size and shape, and I have a terra cotta bowl that I have been using as a birdbath near where the pond is now. That can be the second container. I put some mucky mud and sand in the tool bin tub and filled with rainwater and some pond water to settle so I can skim any floaters. one the water settles and clears up, I'll put it on one of the contoured steps I shaped in the pond, but the lotus root won't sprout until the water temp is up to 70°F according to one article I read.
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Re: My pond project is under way

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The lotus in the little bucket is already starting to grow tiny white roots! :shock: (I probably should have waited until tomorrow then the roots will be even more visible, but I couldn't resist :lol:

image.jpeg


I put the round bowl on one set of steps -- it can go deeper as the water temp goes up. The silt in the square green tub is making the water muddy, and I'm waiting to see if the particles will settle. I don't want to put this in the pond if it's going to make the water murky. I read that silty water can be cleared up with gypsum, alum, or organically with floating hay, etc. I'm thinking that must be the barley straw they sell in pond stores. I'm going to try putting some PBRH (Parboiled rice hulls) in a sock and then in the tub tomorrow and see if that will work.

You can't really see it, but there's a goldfish in that water there. This is the part of the pond with squared off steps where the green tub will go. I also saw the second goldfish and about 5 shiners, plus one more fish that looked a little different, so I'm thinking that one is probably the feeder minnow from the pet shop. It seemed like they came up and were pecking at stuff after I put the punky branch (I saw a bunch of springtails and other bugs crawling and floating off) and the round bowl (there were earthworm muck and some ants underneath) in the pond.

...I tried placing a pot saucer where the turtle spits into the pond for an added interest -- what do you think?
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Re: My pond project is under way

Post by ButterflyLady29 »

Just don't overdo the decorations. Too many and it takes away from the relaxing atmosphere a pond creates.

I don't know about adding stuff to make the water less murky. My main experience is with a big fishing pond. My backyard puddle pond is still in the dream stage.

I have to admit that I am terribly jealous of your progress and imagination. I'll have to look for some water chestnuts and lotus. We've got a few Asian grocery stores here and our chain stores carry some hard to find exotic produce. I'm going to need a bigger pond.

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