Pond Lily

Fall Care For The Koi Pond

Fall is upon us with the days growing shorter and the leaves just starting to turn. This is the time to start preparing the koi pond for the winter months ahead. As the water temperature drops the metabolism of the koi pond starts slowing down. If you have not had a frost yet, it is soon to come. Annuals like water lettuce and water hyacinths need to be pulled before a freeze sets in. Water lettuce is usually the first to show signs of temperature stress. It is important to remove these plants before they die and release toxins into the water and depleting oxygen levels. Any tropical lilies should be removed and stored for the next season. Remove the lily pads as they die off and cut the perennials back to a small area. Plants like watercress should be cut back to a 1 - 2 foot square area. Cut the tops off of water iris to leave about 4 -6 inches. The less the plant surface area on the water, the easier it is to keep the leaves cleaned out of the pond. If you have dead spots it the pond with little water flow, an extra pump can be used to keep the bottom stirred up.

Once the leaves start falling it can be a chore to keep up with, but it is important to keep the skimmer baskets emptied on a daily basis. Not all of the leaves will end up in the skimmer and will have to be netted out. Some people use a net to keep the leaves off the pond during fall. When using a net it should be placed where the net does not sit on the water. This would be counter productive letting the leaves to decay on the top of the water. It can also be difficult to keep all the leaves out of the pond using a net. The leaves that do get in would be impossible to clean without removing the net. Keeping the leaves cleaned up it the yard means fewer leaves that will end up in the pond. Even after the leaves have fallen they can continue to blow into the pond from surrounding areas. A warm spell in the winter months is a good time to clean any leaves that have blown in.