The Garden Community for Garden Lovers

Homemade Pond algae and blanket weed treatment.

12 comments


Years ago we were told about using bags of barley straw weighted down in the pond to control algae and blanket weed. It worked quite well after the initial 3-4 weeks for it to get going. Then we learned about barley straw extract and after using it found it worked really quickly. The concentrated barley straw extract for blanket weed control (£50 for 5 litres) worked a treat but is very expensive. T decided he would try and produce our own so he bought a bale of barley straw from the local farmer for £1. last August and dropped it into the spare green recycle bin. (It just fit in)

He had drilled and fitted a tap to the bottom of the bin so we could drain it.

He filled it to the top with water and left it to soak until the beginning of May when the algae started to appear in the pond. He drained the fluid off and put it through a filter bag and into the empty 5 litre containers and empty cola bottles we had saved. It made about 12gallons of barley extract. The pong of it before filtering was awful and the fluid was a deep red colour. Researching it we were told to leave the clear containers full of the fluid in sunlight after filtering and that would provide solar disinfection. ( apparently that is what they do with ground water collected in Africa. After standing the clear bottles (empty cola bottles) in bright sunlight for 6hrs E coli and all other nasties are killed and it is fit to drink. )
We lined the sealed containers up on the very sunny garage roof and after a couple of days the smell was very faint and the fluid a much paler colour and almost clear.

We tried it half strength in the pond 4weeks ago and noticed the algae was less within the week and the fish were still healthy. So we added a further dose at full strength. The algae and the blanket weed are fully controlled and the fish are spawning again. We have a lot of the fluid left and will use it maybe every 4-6 weeks to keep the pond clear.

More blog posts by homebird

Previous post: Battling the yucca....

Next post: Renishaw Hall and Gardens 14th June.



Comments

 

I don't have a pond Hb but that was very interesting. Your pond looks lovely :o)

14 Jun, 2013

 

Hi Sheila, what a good result, it sounds like a licence to print money for the manufacturers of the concentrate, fantastic profit margin, glad you found out how to make it yourself, Derek.

14 Jun, 2013

 

Thanks Annella.
It has certainly saved us a lot of money this year Derek. :o))

14 Jun, 2013

 

That's a great result. Your pond is beautiful.

14 Jun, 2013

 

Thanks Melchi. We will try most things once...especially if it saves me a bit of money to spend on more plants...lol

14 Jun, 2013

 

Thats a really interesting blog Hb very imformative, your pond looks amazing, I don't know as I would have dared use anything in the fishpond although I have used barleystraw in the wildlife pond....

14 Jun, 2013

 

very interesting homebird, i have trouble with algae in my pond, so i may try this. thanks:-) p.s your pond looks fantastic!

15 Jun, 2013

 

We were a bit apprehensive at first that's why we used it at half the strength suggested by the bought stuff. When we noticed there was no change in the koi behaviour we were relieved and tried a stronger strength. When there was still no reaction from the koi we were confident it was safe to carry on using it. The lady who sold us the original concentrate told us it wouldn't do any harm to the fish or plants if we slipped and emptied the whole 5 litres in at once. When you think about it I suppose all we were doing was speeding up the decay of the barley straw which is what happens when you place the straw in the pond and that reaction is what stops the algae from growing.

15 Jun, 2013

 

Very interesting blog HB. Always a good idea to have a try yourself, terrible price bought ready made. Your OH seems to be a very handy sort. Lovely pond. I don't have one but always interested to read these things.

15 Jun, 2013

 

Well done Hb, great idea.

30 Jun, 2013

 

Thankyou for the link Cherryrosh. We couldn't get the barley straw last year as the farmers wife died suddenly and we didn't like to bother him, then we forgot about the straw. We've used up what little was left so will probably need to get some treatment soon. We will be giving Hydra Quartz a try. The reviews are very positive.

21 May, 2015

Add a comment

Featured on

Recent posts by homebird

Members who like this blog

  • Gardening with friends since
    27 Oct, 2009

  • Gardening with friends since
    9 Aug, 2009

  • Gardening with friends since
    17 Jan, 2012

  • Gardening with friends since
    23 Feb, 2011

  • Gardening with friends since
    16 Apr, 2012

  • Gardening with friends since
    22 Oct, 2008

  • Gardening with friends since
    24 Mar, 2011

  • Gardening with friends since
    13 May, 2010

  • Gardening with friends since
    14 Jul, 2012

Garden centre