It has been a crazy year so far, at least weather wise. It seemed like it took forever for summer to get here but when it did it came on strong and hot trying to make up for the cold rainy weather we had through almost all of July.
So with our goofy weather pattern brings good and bad to the ponds. On the good side is the cooler weather helped to keep the weed growth down, less algae and more passing water through the pond.
The bad is if we had pond Dye in the pond it most likely washed out and or became diluted. This would include our added bacteria that could have washed out as well. Even chemicals/herbicides if you are so inclined to use them. The other bad thing is all this water washing into the pond is also washing in more nutrients from fertilized lawns, leaves, decaying cut grass, pet waste along with geese waste from around the pond. As long as the water is moving,w e shouldn’t see too much algae but now that the rain has stopped and getting hot we’ll see the algae jump into it’s growth and the weeds as well.
The other noticeable difference in the ponds is once the rains stopped and the ground dries up there is no water making its way to the pond. So now we are seeing the pond water level drop. Due to evaporation and I’m sure small leaks as well. With no real springs in our ponds, rain water and snow melt is the only way the ponds keep full. Once the rain has stopped and the ground stopped draining and dries up we can see the pond start to drop if we don’t get rain. If the time from rain to rain is long enough and the ground is dry enough it will take a few good rains to saturate the ground and allow rain to roll to the pond, since the ground is soaking up the rain and not allowing it to drain to the ponds.
So far it looks like we are only going to get a few weeks of summer temperatures that stayed in the 80’s or above and 70’s over night. But we are getting back to the swing weather where we have 80’s during the days and 50’s at night.
Last week I noticed a tree with funny colored leaves, yes it seems fall wants to get in on the summer and let us know winter is not too far off. Which is a reminder to get to work and start removing excess vegetation from around the ponds.
The plants in and around the pond are in full bloom and for a brief time looked great until the water started to drop, but still looks pretty nice nice for all the habitat it provides for the critters in the pond and for those around the pond from bees to deer. Every plants has a purpose and function for the pond and I have been selective on what to plant or what to allow to continue to grow.
Plants like cattails have their seed pods ready to drop more seeds, you know the brown fuzzy thing at the top that sort of looks like a hot dog. It is time to cut the cattails and remove them from the pond to a location where those seed cannot blow back to the pond. Its been said if you cut cattails below the water’s surface they will not grow, since they need oxygen. So far for the past 4 years or so I’ve done this only to find they came back. The only reason I see is that the cattails are close to the shore and their roots actual come up on shore where they can receive oxygen.
Aeration has been a big issue the past couple of years after having these long hard winters with fish kills, folks are wanting to prevent them from happening again. Be sure to check out our Pond Aeration 101 book or start learning about aeration with the Proper Sized Aeration page. Or become a Free Member for all of our free information on ponds, from building to maintaining your pond.