The Garden Community for Garden Lovers



By Lori


*It’s nearing Autumn…and the fishes are less interested in food…but they come to the surface to check out the lady who usually brings it. *
This season has gone by in a blur… I’ve have very little time to spend working in or appreciating my garden and tending my pond. But this season I’ve had a problem with a kind of algae that the fish will not eat…it floats like clouds and I can’t seem to get rid of enough of it when I do a recharge. I’ve done as near as I can come (with fish in the water) to a complete recycle…but it’s back. I worry that it could cause the fish problems with breathing. The more active the fish are the more it disperses. It’s like green dust.
But on a happier note… there are newbies~ some are still dark little shadows, but at least a half dozen have turned orange, so they can be seen in photos.

This will be their last season in this pond and I will have to transport them when we move. I’ve tried counting the fry but they move so fast that I can’t be sure if I’m correct… This winter I will store the nymphaea and fish in a 30 gal. aq.
The dreaded algae came with some oxygenating plants bought in July…I don’t think it’s the filamentous type…it’s just like clouds…and it disperses easily if the water is disturbed making filtering of it very difficult …then it settles to the bottom like dust to be riled up by their feeding activity.
I bought a bag of barley straw and put it in the bottom of the pond, hoping that it would have an effect.. but it hasn’t stopped this algae.
I’m hoping to hear from any fellow goY members who have tackled algae problems and won!

More blog posts by Lori

Previous post: The Optimist Song

Next post: Low cal Apple Crisp



you must be doing lots right Lori to get baby fish!! :( algae :( yuck! Hate it when it comes in on plants too!

11 Sep, 2010


Hope this link can help you pharagraph white water look at nice to know you have got little babies though hope you cure the problem.

11 Sep, 2010


Thanks for the link, Sixpence! very interesting reading. Sounds like the jury is still out on the barley straw too!
I was only supposing when I said it came on the elodea...but it seems logical.
Only other theory is rain???? hmmm...
Thanks for your comments, Karen and Sixpence.

11 Sep, 2010


Your welcome Lori yes rain some times carries horrible things does nt it.

12 Sep, 2010


sorry about the algae problem, my first year and ok up to now so cant help, lovely you getting baby fish to, i had 3 pairs but one out of the 3 pairs died early on so now 3 different fish left, will they mate with opposite types or do they have to be the same lori,, im hoping mine survive winter as not very deep, but clarice assures me they will cause her pond same depth, good luck with the move to,

13 Sep, 2010


That's very true, Sixpence. We lived due south of a smelter mill for many years and the acidity of the rain that fell was almost akin to watered vinegar...very low the 4 and 5 range. Sudbury always looked like the dark side of the moon...very little grew until they put in "scrubbers" and raised the stack. That meant that they gave themselves an umbrella and exported their problem further us, (about 200 miles away) The industry was so proud of their efforts and the improvements it brought to their community...they never thought of us down wind.
Sanbaz: how do you mean "different"? are they koi or carp, fantails, comets, shubunkin, etc. I don't think it means a great deal of difference to them... They usually do not breed until they reach three inches in length and usually at the change of season...change in water temperature is a trigger. You will tell when they are ready to hibernate because they will stop eating all together, and it is important not to have feed in the water for obvious reasons.
Here in Canada, it is a rule of thumb that a pond must have an area that is at least four feet deep (below the maximum penetration of frost) ...and there should be a bubbler to keep the pond from freezing over completely...this allows gases to escape so that the fish don't suffocate. My neice, who lives at roughly the same latitude as I do (just on the other side of the province) sinks her nymphaea to the bottom of the pond...and they go dormant until spring...I, however, was not sure I wanted to risk my plants so I purchased a large aquarium and the fish and nymphaea coexist all winter...the fish clean and groom the plants and the plant supplements the fish's food. It works. The move is causing me some will be late in the year so I wont' be digging a pond before the snow flies and I'll have the three big fish and all their progeny! Yikes. could be a little crowded...maybe Ishould get another aq.

13 Sep, 2010


not sure of makes lori, one is shubunkin and other two not sure, im hopless at names but are like goldfish type, not big like koi,i have a pic in recent photos page 3 where you can see them, but they arent 3inch yet but getting bigger, so maybe another couple of years if they survive winter, i do hope so, they can survive in 18inches of water here, but i guess if we are going to get harsh winters l;ike last they may be at more risk, i can only hope, im putting plastic plumbing pipe at the bottom so they can go inside to keep warm and hybernate,good luck with your move, hope your fish are ok ;o)

14 Sep, 2010


Your description of the algae problem sounds very familiar. My pond appears beautifully clear at the end of winter but within a few weeks it looks like pea soup. We have tried barley straw and various other remedies recommended for clearing algae with little success, so last Christmas my OH gave me a pond fountain/filter/pump. He installed it in the Spring and this year we have been able to see the shelves round the edge of the pond for the first time in several years. The fish stir up the algae, especially at feeding time, but we have been able to see them clearly enough to recognise them individually. At least once a week OH has halled my pressie out to clean the filter, it is amazing how quickly it clogs up. In the last few weeks we have been gently sweeping the shelves and pond bottom daily so that the residue passes into the filter. The algae growth is falling off again as the temperature drops .... we are optimistic that next year we shall be able to see the bottom of the pond again. -)

25 Sep, 2010


Sanbaz: Great idea with the plumber's pipe...I bought a large terra cotta chimney flue...and used a ceramic bit to drill a few holes for circulation of water and to let a little light in at the one end of's rectangular..about 8 inches wide, 14 inches long and 16 inches deep... I put it on it's side at the very deepest part of the pond...and the fishes seem to like it for refuge from the summer sun. If you keep an airstone going in your pond it will make sure it doesn't freeze over if your weather gets very cold. For you it's a maybe; for's a certainty. You're very lucky, you know?
Xela! Hello, nice to hear from you again. Sounds like we both have pea soup algae...and you have found a way to deal with it. Maybe you can tell me what it is that the barley straw is supposed to do? It seemed to me that it emitted an oil slick on the surface of the pond...?? could also have been the new pump which I installed at the same time, I suppose. Fish didn't seem effected ..either way.
Will have to be more conscientious about cleaning the filter. I imagine I could clean it three times a day for the next week and each time it would be clogged inside a half hour of operation! Our temperatures have gone back up into the 70's F. and as a result the good old algae is on the rise again! I'm going shopping for aquaria in Ottawa next week. Need a new Exoterra type for my gecko and a bigger one (at least 40 gallons) for the fish and nymphaea... (Hubby is beginning to see my pond fixation as very expensive)...Keeps me out of trouble though...I'm very tired after a day of slogging.
Here's to clear water!

25 Sep, 2010


thanx for info lori, its starting to get colder now so watching my fish, they are still feeding but are spending more time below unless like today when the sun shone ;o)

25 Sep, 2010


Hi, Lori. it is good to be back.
As the barley straw rots chemicals are released and react with the water.... 'after a period of time we have humic compounds, sunlight and dissolved oxygen ... exactly what is required to make oxygen hyperactive and thus become hydrogen peroxide so long as water is present. As little as 2 ppm (parts per million) or 2 gms of hydrogen peroxide per ton of water is sufficient to inhibit algae growth' []
Had the filter been cleaned every day we may have been able to see the bottom of the pond this year but for us that would have been a reaal challenge. We are just happy that the fish seem to be enjoying life more and we can see them more clearly. -)
As you say, here's to clear water !!!

26 Sep, 2010

Add a comment

Recent posts by Lori

Members who like this blog

  • Gardening with friends since
    9 Aug, 2009

  • Gardening with friends since
    7 Jul, 2010

  • Gardening with friends since
    27 Sep, 2008