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FREQUENTLY ASKED QUESTIONS

Have questions about how a pond works?  You're not alone! Most common questions asked by our clients. Look here first before submitting a question to us. Chances are it has already been answered!

 
 
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  1. Do you use bottom drains?
  2. Do you use Ultra Violet lights?
  3. Why do you put rocks and gravel on the bottom of the pond?
  4. What is the recommended amount of fish to put in the pond?
  5. What is the recommended amount of plants to put in the pond?
  6. How often you want to turn the water over in the pond?
  7. How deep should the pond be?
  8. What do you do with fish in the winter?
  9. Do you plant the plants in pots or directly into the gravel?
  10. How often should you feed the fish?
  11. When should you start/stop feeding the fish?
  12. How do you install the WGP-60 Pump?
  13. Where do I put the bacteria in the pond?
  14. At what temperature should you start putting the bacteria in?
  15. What is the difference between Liquid and Dry bacteria?
  16. Where should the water level be on the skimmer?
  17. What happens to the plants in the winter time?
  18. How soon can I start putting fish in my pond?
  19. What kind of oil is in the Aquascape pump?

Q:  Do you use bottom drains?

A: No, we don't use bottom drains. We feel that with rocks and gravel on the bottom of the pond, the bottom drains are unnecessary. The bacteria in the rocks and gravel will break down any debris that gets down to the bottom of the pond. Also, there is enough aeration coming from the BIOFALLS© and the waterfall to aerate the entire pond.
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Q:  Do you use Ultra Violet lights?

A: No, we don't use UV lights either. Again, we feel that they are unnecessary. If you follow all of the steps of the Aquascape Ecosystem and get enough plants, rocks, gravel, not too many fish and are putting the Aquaclearer bacteria, you won't need the UV light. We rarely ever have green water in our ponds that we build, and most of the time it clears up with in a couple of weeks. UV lights will do nothing but get you into a cycle that works against nature instead of with it.
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Q:  Why do you put rocks and gravel on the bottom of the pond?

A: We put rocks and gravel on the bottom of the pond for a couple of reasons. The number one reason is for filtration of the pond. The rocks provide a huge amount of surface area for the bacteria to colonize on. This bacterial breaks down the fish waste and other organic debris that fall to the bottom. The second reason is to help lock the liner in place so that the water weight doesn't bring it down. The third main reason is aesthetics. The ponds with rocks and gravel on the bottom of the pond is much more natural looking than having a black liner with nothing but algae covering it up.
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Q:  What is the recommended amount of fish to put in the pond?

A: Our rule of thumb for amount of fish is to have 1" of fish for every 1 sq. ft. of pond surface area.
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Q:  What is the recommended amount of plants to put in the pond?

A: The recommended amount of plants is to have 30-50% of the surface covered. You want to have a good mix of plants. You don't want to have all of one type of plant. Put in a mix of marginal, oxygenators, and lilies. You'll want to have more of the first two types of plants more than the lilies.
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Q:  How often you want to turn the water over in the pond?

A: We try to turn the water over in the pond once every 2 hours minimum. Once every hour is the ideal turn over rate in smaller ponds.
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Q:  How deep should the pond be?

A: Average size ponds don't need to be more than 2' deep for fish and plants to over-winter in Zone 5 Chicago. This two foot depth can be extended into Canada. For small water gardens in most zones you can over-winter fish and plants in 2-2.5' of depth.
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Q:  What do you do with fish in the winter?

A: We leave them in the pond. Make sure that there is something keeping a hole open in the ice and the water moving. We will put a temperature controlled heater and a small fountain pump in the pond near each other. When the air temp drops below 10 degrees above zero the heater kicks in and helps to keep the water moving.
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Q:  Do you plant the plants in pots or directly into the gravel?

A: We plant all the plants except Lotus directly into the gravel. The plants grow much better in the gravel because their roots will never get bound. This also helps the eco-system, because the plants will be able to search out more nutrients by letting the root system travel through the gravel and rocks.
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Q:  How often should you feed the fish?

A: This is a debatable question and also depends on how many fish you have in the pond. We usually recommend not feeding fish more than once a day. The fish have plenty of things to nibble on in the pond, and the more you feed the fish, the more waste they will produce.
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Q:  When should you start/stop feeding the fish?

A: Don't feed the fish when the water is under 55 degrees. The fish metabolism is slowed down and won't be able to process the food.
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Q:  How do you install the WGP-60 Pump?

A: You will remove the 90 degree elbow on the side of the pumps and screw the Check valve in there. Then lay the pump down on its side in the skimmer, hook it up to the pipe, and plug it it.
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Q:  Where do I put the bacteria in the pond?

A: Sprinkle the Bacteria in front of the skimmer. This will make sure that the bacteria gets into the BIOFALLS© and every where else in the pond.
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Q:  At what temperature should you start putting the bacteria in?

A: Wait until the water temperature is above 50 degrees to start putting the bacteria in. The bacteria starts to really take off in temperatures above 65 degrees.
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Q:  What is the difference between Liquid and Dry bacteria?

A: The dry bacteria is freeze dried and concentrated. It takes 3-4 days in the water before it really starts to become active. The liquid bacteria is already alive and starts to work as soon as it is in the pond. It is not as concentrated, but faster acting. The liquid bacteria is recommended for spring start up and for combating green water, the dry bacteria is recommended for maintenance during the season.
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Q:  Where should the water level be on the skimmer?

A: The water should be set at 3/4" below the top of the skimmer opening. This is roughly at the second screw down from the top of the opening.
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Q:  What happens to the plants in the winter time?

A: Most hardy plants will die back and go dormant during the winter. The tropical plants need to be brought inside, or treated as annuals.
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Q:  How soon can I start putting fish in my pond?

A: We usually say 3-4 days after the pond is filled and running.
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Q:  What kind of oil is in the Aquascape pump?

A: Nishiki white oil
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