Whether it's a bleak December or the more mild weather we are becoming used to, you can still spend useful time in the garden. David Coton suggests the jobs that can occupy the shortening days.
If you want fit and healthy fish then it is essential you feed them the right food, this will also avoid polluting the water too.
When purchasing your pond fish food, consider the size of the foods you’re buying, of course smaller fish will struggle to eat huge pellets that don’t fit into their mouth but also big fish will not benefit from tiny pellets.
Also consider the temperature, if the temperature is below 5 degrees centigrade then it’s pointless feeding your fish, this is because when it’s this cold the digestive system of your fish will shut down, the fish will normally just ignore food put into the pond during this period, but if they do eat it, then due to their digestive system not working the food will sit in their belly and rot, causing major problems for the fish even leading to fatality.
If the temperature is 5 – 10 degrees then use wheatgerm foods. Wheatgerm is easier for the fish to digest, so during cooler temperatures such as this, when their digestive system is slower they can still eat and digest the food.
During warmer weather such as 10 – 30 degrees you can use much higher protein food, and this will also aid fish growth as the higher the protein the more the fish will grow, as long as they are able to digest it. Anything over 30 degrees and it’s best to stop feeding.
Floating Sticks, these are probably the cheapest and most commonly used food, they are easy to remove from the pond if uneaten and they are quite good value for money usually. Varieties available include growth, vitality and colour sticks.
Floating Pellets, a very common pond food, they will usually have a range of sizes to suit your fish size, you’ll also find there are many varieties such as growth, colour and vitality just like sticks.
Sinking Pellets, aimed at bottom feeding fish such as Sturgeon, but most fish will eat them anyway. Be sure to check that they have been eaten from the bottom as these are the easiest type to over feed on. Out of sight, out of mind!
Flake Fish Food, every one knows what flake food looks like, usually best to be used on smaller fish, especially fry (baby fish). Be careful, flake can be messy and are no use to large fish like koi who will usually just spit them back out after consuming them.
Silkworm Pupae is a Koi luxury food. It is dried insect in rich high protein. It will aid both growth and colour and are a superb supplement, but best used in additional to another food.
You can buy a huge range of coldwater fish food from Gardensite. Call their Aquatics Department on 0121 355 7701 for free independent and impartial advice.
With warmer weather and an early Easter, the garden centre is busy at the moment with customers stocking up on summer bedding plants - snapdragons, cornflowers, cosmos, verbena, phlox, petunia, As well as filling planters, hanging baskets and borders with colour that will last all summer, there are always plenty of jobs to do in the garden during April and David Coton has these suggestions.
Every gardener must have noticed a decline in the bee population over recent years. Intensive farming that demands the use of toxic chemicals, climate change and parasite infestation have all been put forward as potential causes, it's a worrying trend but one that we can all help to reverse.
As an excellent alternative to conventional products, Trimetals' storage solutions blend top quality manufacture with contemporary style. Their range has now been extended to include two new maintenance free sheds and Robert Hall has all the details.
Zest 4 Leisure manufactures a large variety of timber garden furniture, fencing and leisure products, David Coton visited their brand new nine acre site near Chester last week to find out more about current development and future plans.