The fall season is a wondrous time to enjoy your water garden, what with all the luscious colors, fewer bugs, and comfortable temperatures. To keep your pond looking its best during the autumn season, follow our simple tips on how to care for your pond during fall.
Remove leaves and debris
In some areas, leaves can start dropping before they even turn color. Your pond skimmer will do a good job removing leaves and debris from the surface of the water. If you notice a few have settled to the bottom of the pond, remove them before they have a chance to decay. Be careful of slippery rocks underfoot if you decide to venture into the pond to remove leaves and debris from the pond’s bottom. If you don’t like getting wet and don’t own a pair of waders, you can use a pond net to remove them. You’ll know you have too much organic matter accumulated in the pond when the water starts turning brown. If this happens, add Aquascape Activated Pond Carbon or Clear for Ponds to help clear the water.
Check your skimmer basket
You want to check your skimmer basket more frequently when the fall season begins. Hopefully you have an Aquascape skimmer with its easy-to-remove debris basket. Simply take the basket out of the skimmer and remove any leaves and debris. On occasion, you’ll find leaves and debris outside of the basket. You can reach into the skimmer and pull them out by hand, or use a small net to scoop out any debris that escaped the confines of your basket. When you’re done, slide the basket back into place. You should check the skimmer every couple of days at the beginning of the season, and then check it daily when fall is in full swing.
Install pond netting
Be sure to net your pond while the colorful spectrum of leaves is still clinging to the trees. Preparing to catch the leaves before they fall is one of the best things you can do to minimize pond maintenance. Putting Aquascape Protective Pond Netting over your water feature before leaves start falling from trees is the easiest way to contain and manage leaf control. Once all the leaves have fallen, simply roll up the net, discard the leaves, and put the net away until the next time it’s needed. If you didn’t install netting, you’ll probably have a buildup of leaves and debris that need to be removed. A long-handled pond net makes an easy job of scooping the debris from the bottom of the pond. If you leave the debris on the bottom of the pond, you’ll be creating a bigger mess to face in the spring.
Take proper care of aquatic plants
Stop fertilizing your pond plants when the weather turns cooler as this will let your plants know that the season is coming to an end. Trim dead foliage to remove excessive organic debris that would otherwise decompose in the water. Your tropical and hardy water lilies will continue to thrive until the first frost. Cut back hardy waterlilies just above the base of the plant and cut back marginal plants that could droop over into the water.
Add cold water bacteria
Add Aquascape Cold Water Beneficial Bacteria to help keep pond water clean and clear during the cooler months. Cold Water Beneficial Bacteria contains concentrated strains of beneficial bacteria designed to work in temperatures lower than 50 degrees. Weekly use of cold water bacteria helps maintain water quality and clarity, as well as dramatically reduces spring maintenance by digesting debris that may accumulate over the winter months.
Ensure healthy fish before winter
You want to make sure your fish are in good condition before they go into hibernation. When the water temperature falls below 60 degrees, the metabolism and digestion of your fish begins to slow down. Aquascape Premium Cold Water Fish Food is scientifically formulated to properly nourish your fish during these lower temperatures. Be sure to stop feeding your fish altogether when water temperature falls below 50 degrees.
Taking these preventive measures will create a healthy pond habitat for your fish throughout winter and on into the springtime! For more tips and information, watch our fall pond maintenance video: