How to Prevent and Eliminate Pond Algae

Most people prefer a hot summer that's full of sunshine, but your pond certainly doesn't and is liable to become clogged by green algae. Why should you be bothered and what can you do about it?

Created by David Coton on Thursday, 14th of August, 2014.


NULL

The reason why algae needs to be eliminated is twofold, yes it is unsightly but perhaps more important, it has a detrimental effect on any pond life.

There are many types of algae, including blanket weed, that turns a pond into something resembling pea soup. The core of the problem is that whatever the type, algae deoxygenates the water, hence the need to eradicate it.

What causes pond algae?

Too much sunlight is a major reason, particularly during the summer if the water is too shallow. 

The other most important factor is poor filtration that leads to high nutrient levels in the water. This can result from decaying matter, rain leaching garden fertilizer into the water or the detritus from too many fish.

How can you prevent algae?

Position the pond away from trees and, especially in the autumn, use netting to prevent leaves falling into the water. Also make sure that dying foliage of aquatic plants is collected to stop it decaying at the bottom of the pond.

Ensure that the pond receives some shade during the day. If like me you have a south facing garden this can be difficult but it's really important and one way to achieve it is having surface plants such as lilies cover 50% of the water

The water should be at least 2ft deep, ideally 4ft if you are keeping fish and ensure that the pond is not overstocked with fish. Avoid the water becoming stagnant by installing a water feature that will aerate the pond.

Only introduce plants that are growing in low nutrient aquatic compost and when topping up a pond use rainwater from a butt rather than tap water.

Regularly use a pond test kit to discover the water's pH and levels of ammonia, nitrate, nitrite, chlorine. By detecting any problems you can take remedial action and return the pond to the balance that's best for aquatic life to flourish.

Adequate filtration is essential to prevent the build-up of nutrients. There is a wide range of pond filtration equipment, some with integral UV clarifiers that eradicate algae, leaving the filter to remove other debris. Pond UV clarifiers can also be bought separately. 

Eliminating algae from a pond

Do not be tempted to replace the water, the chlorine and other substances in tap water will only make the problem worse in the long term.

If algae has already taken a hold on the pond remove as much as you can with a stick or net and then use a specialist pond treatment that will either kill the algae or remove the nutrients that the algae feeds on. Barley straw can also be effective, for a small pond use it in lquid or pellet form.

Once under control, put into place the algae prevention advice and then regulalry test the water as you may well need to treat it on several occasions. With regular attention the pond should remain in perfect condition for you to admire and for your wildlife to thrive in.

Related Articles

How Can I Prevent A Pond From Freezing?

How Can I Prevent A Pond From Freezing?

An iced over pond will have a detrimental effect on animal and plant pond life, although fish and amphibians will survive under a frozen surface for some time, ice traps gases escaping from decaying material and prevents oxygen from entering the water.

Author: Dan Everton

Written by Dan Everton.
Published on Wednesday, 22nd of August, 2018.

What To Do In The Garden In May

What To Do In The Garden In May

Although the weather is feeling decidedly chilly for the time of the year, during May the threat of frost will pass and, with spring well under way, David Coton is in no doubt that this is going to be a busy month in the garden.

Author: David Coton

Written by David Coton.
Published on Monday, 30th of April, 2018.

What To Do In The Garden In April

What To Do In The Garden In April

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.

Author: David Coton

Written by David Coton.
Published on Thursday, 29th of March, 2018.

What To Do In The Garden In December

What To Do In The Garden In December

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 during the last month of the year. David Coton suggests some garden jobs that can occupy the short days.

Author: David Coton

Written by David Coton.
Published on Monday, 20th of November, 2017.

comments powered by Disqus

Author

David Coton

Partner at GardenSite

View Profile

RSS

View RSS Feed

Follow Us!

Recent Articles

Review of Halls Qube Greenhouses

Review of Halls Qube Greenhouses

Robert Hall reviews the new Halls Qube Greenhouse, stating that; this is a major evolutionary step in greenhouse design. Read his full review of the new range here.

Author: Robert Hall

Written by Robert Hall.
Published on Thursday, 29th of November, 2018.

GardenSite Supports Successful Boldmere Community Festival

GardenSite Supports Successful Boldmere Community Festival

GardenSite were once again pleased to support the Boldmere Community Festival which took place on 18 November, with the Christmas Lights switched on by Alan Gardner, well known for his appearances as TV's Autistic Gardener.

Author: David Coton

Written by David Coton.
Published on Friday, 23rd of November, 2018.

What To Do In The Garden In December

What To Do In The Garden In December

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 during the last month of the year. David Coton suggests some garden jobs that can occupy the short days.

Author: David Coton

Written by David Coton.
Published on Monday, 20th of November, 2017.

How Can I Prevent A Pond From Freezing?

How Can I Prevent A Pond From Freezing?

An iced over pond will have a detrimental effect on animal and plant pond life, although fish and amphibians will survive under a frozen surface for some time, ice traps gases escaping from decaying material and prevents oxygen from entering the water.

Author: Dan Everton

Written by Dan Everton.
Published on Wednesday, 22nd of August, 2018.