Controlling Pond Algae Makes for a Healthy, Clean and Beautiful Pond
The water gardeners ability to identify the type of algae in a pond and restrict the nutrients available, is an effective way to preventing pond algae growth. The only thing that equals the frustration of seeing algae, is trying to control it.
Algae blooms in ponds and water gardens are stimulated by the availability of excess nutrients and sunlight. Excess nutrients usually come from decaying vegetation, fish feces, fish food and fertilization run-off. Shallow ponds provide the most likely environments for algae to occur, due to the ability of sunlight to penetrate through to the bottom soil.
Basically there are 3 types of pond algae:
1. Planktonic Algae are microscopic, free floating algae that give ponds their clear green color. Normal amounts of planktonic algae are mandatory for a healthy pond, as they are responsible for supplying the pond with dissolved oxygen, essential for the health of the other aquatic life. When planktonic algae start to bloom, usually in summer months they will give ponds a pea soup appearance.
2. Filamentous algae, often called pond scum or pond moss, begins growing on the bottom of ponds in the early spring on surfaces like rocks and logs and resembles a green carpet. As the clumps grow, they break loose from the bottom and float to the top, causing ugly green clumps on the pond surface. Filamentous algae has no redeemable value to a pond.
3. Attached-erect algae are less common, but can be mistaken for a plant due to its dense, gritty appearance. It resembles aquatic plants with leaf-like structures. This type of algae provides no significant value to a pond system.
Controlling pond algae:
Common solutions for controlling pond algae are algaecides like copper sulfate due to its ability to kill the algae quickly. However, a quick kill off of algae will actually work against the health of the pond. Large algae kills will result in a decrease in available oxygen for other aquatic life and the increase in nutrients stemming from the dead algae, which leads to new cycles of algae.
An more effective, long term method to control pond algae is the use of a live microbial product. Natural Enviro 4000 uses special beneficial bacteria to break the growth cycle of pond algae. The microbes consume the excess nutrients, limiting the amount available for the algae. They also break down the decaying vegetation and other organic matter while at the same time releasing oxygen back into the pond. Natural Enviro 4000 are all-natural and completely safe for fish, animals and plants.
The introduction of increased oxygen levels creates a positive effect by causing the decomposition of organic matter to occur faster and increased amounts of oxygen also squeeze out other gases like carbon dioxide, which aquatic plants like algae need to survive