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Water Gardens: Algea problems-HELP

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mekos
Fair Play, SC
(Zone 7b)

June 3, 2009
2:19 PM

Post #6635674

MY pond water is green. I used microb lift for weeks every week and almost killed my lotus. The pads started turning brown , I don't want to use dangerous chemicals to hurt my fish and plants but what can I use to get nice water like other ponds I see. I tried barley pads last year, but didn't seem to be doing anything either. Just went to the bottom of the pond where I have a mess now.BUT made rich place for growing water lilies.However I still have green water. Can't see my fish unless they come to the top of the water to eat. I barely put food in for them to eat so can't be that. What am I doing wrong?

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snapple45
Holland, OH
(Zone 5b)

June 4, 2009
2:43 AM

Post #6639163

Are you using Microbe-Lift Algaway? If you are dosing correctly it shouldn't be affecting the Lotus. Some older Lotus leaves do yellow and die but new ones should be coming on faster than the old ones die off. Is your pond water well circulated and filtered? I kill pea soup algae with UV lights and string algae with Aquascapes String Algae Buster. The dead algae has to be constantly cleared from the filters, which can mean cleanings at least every three days.
mekos
Fair Play, SC
(Zone 7b)

June 4, 2009
4:50 AM

Post #6639640

I filter the larger pond and just circulate the water in the smaller one. I used microbe-lift and algea is rising to the top, in the larger pond, but didn't have plants in it. (It is still green though) and the smaller one I also used it and my lotus started turning brown, but the water is still green in there, too. Last year I used the barley pads and they just sunk and still had green water. I just dug my small pond this year just for water plants but put some small gold fish in there for mosquito control with the plants.During the microb-lift usage, some of the gold fish died also. I put it in just like the instructions said and once a week until I finished it up. After the plants looked so bad, I didn't get any more, Didn't want to totally kill them.
snapple45
Holland, OH
(Zone 5b)

June 4, 2009
4:12 PM

Post #6641247

I'm surprised at the Microbe Lift Algaway having a negative effect. It's supposed to fish and plant safe. I can only advise that you get a UV installed on the big pond and adequate filtration on the smaller pond. Are they connected? This sounds to me more like partially a filtration problem. Are you certain your filter and circulation turnover is adquately sized for the pond gallon size?
For barely to work best it should be directly in the flow of the water. You can add 3% Hydrogen Peroxide to the ponds to kill algae based on 1pt. per 1000 gallons. H2o2 ( Hydrogen Peroxide) is what barley emits to kill algae. It is safe for plants and fish if used at the proper rate. You have to know the gallons in the pond.
mekos
Fair Play, SC
(Zone 7b)

June 4, 2009
4:45 PM

Post #6641391

They are not connected. The larger pond is 3 ft deep and when I installed it, I bought a 20x20 liner. I'm not exactly sure on gallons but the pump and filter can handle 3-500 gal.per hr. OUT side filter. The small one I bought a 15x20 liner and it is 2-2 1/2 ft deep at the deepest part.But I have a filter ,it just kept turning over so I took it out and put the pipe in to make the running water. It's not totally finished yet, I'm looking for some Pretty spout to put the water back into the pond instead of the pipe.Then maybe add the filter system back.Just wanted to fix the water first but may need to finish the other stuff first.
snapple45
Holland, OH
(Zone 5b)

June 4, 2009
4:52 PM

Post #6641422

Here you go! Step one: Calculate the gallons in each pond.

http://www.ponddoc.com/WhatsUpDoc/General/Gallons.htm

Post the results along with the name and specifications of the filtration equipment you currently have running.
mekos
Fair Play, SC
(Zone 7b)

June 6, 2009
1:35 AM

Post #6648272

I just found out that putting plant tablets in the plant pots, can cause algea. Someone posted pictures of their new water lily bloom and said he was suppose to put 3 tablets in the plant pot but only put one because he didn't want green water. I PUT 2 in each pot and the next day the water turned green and I put it in every month and just added several new pots with 2 food caplets to each pot. I think this is the culprit.
snapple45
Holland, OH
(Zone 5b)

June 6, 2009
2:41 AM

Post #6648498

No, it's not the problem. I have 6 pots in my pond, each with 2 - 3 fertilizer tablets replenished on a regular basis. My water is crystal clear. The algae comes from sunshine and fish waste. Clearing it up takes adequate filtration and the selction of appropriate control methods. Pea soup algae is best managed with the addition of a UV light. String algea can be remedied by mechanical removal ( you and brush) or a product expressly for string algae. You can use Hydrogen Peroxide to get an immediate kill on both. The formula is 1pt per 1000 gallons. Do the math. Go ahead and eliminte or reduce the fertilizer tablets. When that strategy doesn't work consider the others mentioned. Have a good ponding summer.
mekos
Fair Play, SC
(Zone 7b)

June 6, 2009
4:16 PM

Post #6650029

Is the peroxide the kind you put on cuts or put on to bleach hair? and will it hurt my fish?
snapple45
Holland, OH
(Zone 5b)

June 6, 2009
5:22 PM

Post #6650322

The hydrogen peroxide is the kind you buy in the drugstore for cuts. It is NOT the formula used for hair. The bottle will say the strength is 3%. You have to know the gallons in your pond. The dosage rate is 1pt for each 1000 gallons. So, as an exapmle, if your pond is 500 gallons you would use 1/2 pt. or 8 oz. Used at the correct dosage it will not harm plants or fish. Do your math first to make sure you have a good idea of how many gallons your pond holds. One pint equals 16 ounces so multiply .016 X the gallons in your pond. You will get an immediate kill. The result will be a lot of dead algae sinking to the bottom and clogging the filters. Be sure to clean out all the dead algae you possibly can. The pond will look pretty good for a while, but because the same conditions that lead to algae growth are still there, the algae will return.
mekos
Fair Play, SC
(Zone 7b)

June 6, 2009
5:59 PM

Post #6650455

Ok thanks and I'll try that.
rylaff
Niceville, FL
(Zone 8b)

June 9, 2009
11:34 AM

Post #6662609

I got an external filter with a built in IV about 3 years ago. Zero algae since.
WUVIE
Hulbert, OK
(Zone 7a)

June 10, 2009
2:15 AM

Post #6666403

What a great thread, I've enjoyed reading all of your posts.

Snapple, the fish are mostly hubby's thing at this point, but I figure if
I can help, I'd love to.

Hubby's pond is cool, but you can't see the fish unless they come to
the top to eat. We prefer not to use chemicals, but if hydrogen peroxide
will work, I'm willing. If it won't harm the fish if applied in proper doses as
you stated above, very good. Hubs tends to be 'thrifty' but I would like to
buy him something that will make the water clear. I rigged a silly looking
thing with a towel and rinse the towel every day, but geez, I can't clean
both ponds, both filters, both towel rigs every day. Help!

Rylaff, IV? I don't know much at this point, did you mean UV, or do I
have more research to do? ;-)

He has a 1,000 gallon pond on the right side of the deck and a
2,000 gallon on the left. We're up to our eyeballs in fish but can't see 'em!

:-) Karen
mekos
Fair Play, SC
(Zone 7b)

June 10, 2009
2:19 AM

Post #6666453

I just spotted a bloom rising to the top of my pond. Don't know if it's a water lily or lotus bloom yet. It's a big bloom so far, but hasn't opened yet in all the green.I'll take a picture when it opens. Can't wait.
rylaff
Niceville, FL
(Zone 8b)

June 10, 2009
3:28 AM

Post #6666869

Wuvie, ooops sorry. Yes, it is a UV. It has so amazed me. I have not had even string algae. Nawda, none, zero.
mekos
Fair Play, SC
(Zone 7b)

June 10, 2009
3:31 AM

Post #6666879

I hear people talking about it but don't have a clue where it would go or how to do that uv light thing.
snapple45
Holland, OH
(Zone 5b)

June 10, 2009
3:49 AM

Post #6666956

If the Ultraviolet Light isn't built in as part of the original filter then you have to retrofit one. It isn't difficult. It would be called an "inline" UV. You would cut your intake line in the section going into the filter. The pond water comes in from the pump, goes through the line to the UV, passes through the UV back into the line which goes into the filter. As the water passes by the UV light bulb algae is killed. Dead algae clumps. The filter catches the clumps. The water is then filtered and the clean water exits the filter back into the pond. The UV light should be the right size (wattage) for the gallons per hour passing by it. The bulb has to be replaced after 12 months of time on the bulb. Not calendar months but months of actual usage. Which ever UV you choose for a retrofit make sure it is easy to get the bulb out for replacing and an occaisional wiping down. The bulb itself is protected by a clear quartz sleeve. That has to be kept clean so that it doesn't obstruct the light. They are not left out to freeze in the winter. They require electricity to light the bulb. Here is just a couple of web sites with examples. There are scads of places to buy them from, so shop around. Money well spent.

http://store.123ponds.com/ultriviolet-sterilizers-aqua-uv.html
http://www.marineandreef.com/UV_Sterilizers_In_Line_s/431.htm
mekos
Fair Play, SC
(Zone 7b)

June 10, 2009
4:03 AM

Post #6666991

Thanks. you're a big help.
WUVIE
Hulbert, OK
(Zone 7a)

June 10, 2009
12:18 PM

Post #6667713


Snapple,

Great information, and so helpful, I do appreciate it!






mekos
Fair Play, SC
(Zone 7b)

June 12, 2009
11:18 PM

Post #6679692

In amongst all my algea, I had a water lily to bloom. Sure is pretty. Obviously the green water didn't hurt the plants. It seems they survived the microb-lift also.

Thumbnail by mekos
Click the image for an enlarged view.

snapple45
Holland, OH
(Zone 5b)

June 13, 2009
2:04 AM

Post #6680438

Oh how pretty! The thing about green water - the fish don't mind it and the plants don't mind it. They're perfectly happy. It's the pond owner who doesn't like it.
mekos
Fair Play, SC
(Zone 7b)

June 13, 2009
7:03 PM

Post #6682803

That's true.
mothermole
Deer Park, IL
(Zone 5b)

June 13, 2009
8:42 PM

Post #6683145

I read your post with curiosity. I dumped lots of the mircrolift in my pond and it doesn't harm plants or fish. I have at least 20 plants or more in my pond. Something that Snapple suggested (and a few others here seconded it) was a bio filter called the Fishmate with a UV light on it. I, affectionately call it R2D2 and it is not only inexpensive, it work great, and it is VERY, VERY easy to clean (once Snapple explained to me to unplug it to back wash it). My pond was never, ever as crystal clear as it became after a few days of using R2D2. I am in the process of making a pond spitter out of cement that I am going to route R2D2 (the fishmate return hose) into. I also have used this fishmate to filter my 120gallon hospital tank (my fishmate is rated for 2000 gallons) and my fish absolutely love to ride the extremely rough current it makes in there.

BTW: I over fertilize my plants to get the foliage growth and the blooms but the fishmate keeps everything in check. At the moment, I am in the process of revamping my pond with a aerated bottom drain and it is currently about 5.5 feet deep (it doubled in depth). This new biofilter also has the UV light on it as well. I found the UV light did such a great job with my fish mate that I put another one on the drain return.

WillowWasp

WillowWasp
Jones Creek, TX
(Zone 9a)

June 14, 2009
3:51 PM

Post #6685959

I used all kinds of chemicals and the reed mats, it cost me alot of bucks and only to have the alga come back again and again. I then bought an inexpensive UV filter on ebay (just type in UV Pond Filter) and within 3 weeks my pond was clear and so far have not had alge return.
It is so nice go go out and see the fish and be able to tap on the side of the pond and have them come up to greet you. I only have a few plants in the pond and none of them seem affected either way with the green water or without.

In my opinion the uv filter system is the way to go and get rid of chemicals altogether. At one time my pond was so green you couldn't see fish an inch below the water so I had to do something...

Thumbnail by WillowWasp
Click the image for an enlarged view.

TARogers5
Kingston, OK
(Zone 7a)

June 14, 2009
8:47 PM

Post #6686971

I wanted to go the UV light way until I priced them. Two lights for my pond was over 500 dollars. So I gave up on a clear pond and added the blue coloring. Sure looks pretty now and do not have to go that expense every year to replace them. LOL
mekos
Fair Play, SC
(Zone 7b)

June 16, 2009
1:43 AM

Post #6693172

Can you see into it? See the fish? The plants? I've never seen a pond with blue coloring. What's it like?

WillowWasp

WillowWasp
Jones Creek, TX
(Zone 9a)

June 16, 2009
3:23 AM

Post #6693646

TA, how big is your pond? I thought it was expensive at first to since my UV filter system was over 100 dollars but am I glad that I did it. I can see the fish and everything that is in the pond as well as stuff that shouldn't be. I can get leaves off the bottom and keep everything ship shape before anything goes wrong. Best of all I can monitor the fish and make sure everyone one is OK instead of going out and finding one floating with nothing to be done.

I would look at different companies to see what you can get the UV bulbs, pumps and such for and then build your own system. You don't have to have a great big store bought system that cost a bunch and I know they can be pricey. If you build your own
system you could do it for alot less than you think and still have exactly what your pond needs no matter the size.

I know there are lots of folks here that know how to do this and would be willing to share their information.
I bought my UV filter and stuff before I knew you could build your own and have alot better Filter system and I sure wish I would have known more about this and built it myself. Live and learn... It is at least worth investigating.
Dee
TARogers5
Kingston, OK
(Zone 7a)

June 16, 2009
3:01 PM

Post #6695308

Aqua UV - 25 Watt Clarifier Retrofit UV Unit for Savio Full Size Skimmer
Suggested Retail: $210.00
This is what would fit my skimmer and I would need two of them. Just for a year???
4500 gallons with an 8 X 8 veggie garden.
JIust like my green water but is blue and can see my fish when I feed them.
Thanks Dee for the boost.
mekos
Fair Play, SC
(Zone 7b)

June 16, 2009
4:07 PM

Post #6695710

ANYONE know how to build one? Come and let us know. I want clear and be able to keep both arms and legs and my first born. Help us find info.
snapple45
Holland, OH
(Zone 5b)

June 16, 2009
5:46 PM

Post #6696186

TARogers5 - I could be mistaken but I think that's the price for the whole unit. The replacement bulb is much less and you only need to replace the bulb every 12 months of use, not the entire unit.
mekos
Fair Play, SC
(Zone 7b)

June 16, 2009
6:44 PM

Post #6696400

I just put up a new forum to see if anyone will tell us how to make a filter system with a uv light inside. Mekos
WUVIE
Hulbert, OK
(Zone 7a)

June 16, 2009
8:15 PM

Post #6696816

Hi Mekos, I Googled 'How to UV filter pond' and came up with a ton.
Just leave out the unnecessary words and type in the good stuff.

:-)
snapple45
Holland, OH
(Zone 5b)

June 16, 2009
10:35 PM

Post #6697444

WUVIE - Are you looking to build a filter and add a UV or build both a UV and a filter? A UV is an ultraviolet light bulb, encased in a quartz sleeve, sealed within a water tight unit that lets pond water pass by the light bulb. Water tight is certainly important as electricity and water are .. well...you know, not compatible. I don't think a UV is a do-it-your self build. Adding one to an existing filtration system is relatively simple.
mekos
Fair Play, SC
(Zone 7b)

June 16, 2009
10:42 PM

Post #6697475

Where can you get the uv light to put in your own filter that you already have? Like lowes or home depot or somewhere we can find it if we're not in a particular state.
snapple45
Holland, OH
(Zone 5b)

June 17, 2009
12:02 AM

Post #6697837

They are a specialty item. Some pond stores do have them. They are widely available on the internet. See my post of June 9th for some internet sources. One very good brand is "AQUA". I've had one for nine years. It's an inline. I replace the bulb after each twelve months of use. The unit has never failed or leaked.
mekos
Fair Play, SC
(Zone 7b)

June 17, 2009
12:10 AM

Post #6697878

How big is the unit and how much does it cost? Do you mind saying.
snapple45
Holland, OH
(Zone 5b)

June 17, 2009
12:50 AM

Post #6698109

Nope. This is the unit I have. This is not where I got it from. I can't urge you strongly enough to shop around the net. You can find some really good bargains if you do a thorough search. I use it as a clarifier so it's good for a 4000 gal pond.

http://www.thepondwarehouse.com/pond/aqua-ultraviolet-25-watt-uv-sterilizer-clarifier-106.html?utm_source=google&utm_medium=organic_shopping_feed&utm_campaign=iClick_Shopping_Feed


Don't let clarifier and sterilizer get you confused. There are koi breeders/fanciers who us UV's to sterilize the water in their breeding facilities. You want to use a UV as a "clarifier". In other words it clarifies the water by killing all the algae and some bacteria but by no means all bacteria.

This message was edited Jun 16, 2009 8:56 PM
mekos
Fair Play, SC
(Zone 7b)

June 21, 2009
12:02 AM

Post #6716721

Well, I purchased a UV light and installed it 2 days ago but still have green water. Does anyone know how long it takes to clear it up? My pond is 2000 gallons and the UV light is for- up to- 4000 gallons. I figured when the larger pond is clear, I'll run the smaller pond in there as well and get it cleared up. (pump the water from the large to the small one and from the small one to the large one and the UV light is on the large one.)
snapple45
Holland, OH
(Zone 5b)

June 21, 2009
12:58 AM

Post #6716897

Three of four more days. It just depends on how much algae load you had to begin with. What's the GPH of your pump? How many feet of head do you have? Are you seeing dead clumped algae in your filters?

WillowWasp

WillowWasp
Jones Creek, TX
(Zone 9a)

June 21, 2009
2:20 AM

Post #6717219

My pond is small less than 1000 gallons, and my UV filter is for up to 2000 gallon pond. It took my UV almost 2 weeks to clear up the alga and the pump I used was 250 GPH.
mekos
Fair Play, SC
(Zone 7b)

June 21, 2009
2:43 AM

Post #6717282

The pump goes 350gph. When I put the UVlight on it, I had to disconnect the filter. There are a few little clumps of dead algea on the surface and I'm skimming it off as I see it. I have a few floating plants on the surface and water lilies in the pond. There is 15foot of pipe going to the Light and 6feet going out from it for a water fall effect. Was I suppose to keep the filter on there with the uvlight? It's putting clear water back in the pond, you can see it's clear. It was really green. It's not string algea or the other kind people asked about, it's the 3rd kind. I don't remember the name. But it does look like it's getting better. I was just wondering about how long it would take to clear up, if it takes a while or sooner. I'm fixint to make a canopy to go over my smaller pond covered with vines to put some shade on it to help keep the algea down and thought about letting the water pump into the larger pond if this clears it up pretty good. It will all circulate through the uvlight.
snapple45
Holland, OH
(Zone 5b)

June 21, 2009
3:06 AM

Post #6717378

You may never get the algae cleared up with that low a flow rate. The algae can reproduce faster than it passes by and gets killed by the light. For 2000 gallons you need to pump through the filter at least 1000 gph. No wonder you've got green water. Yes, you still have to filter the water AND have the UV installed. You need a pump that can push 1000 gph hr at 21' of head. You need a filter that can filter 1000 gph.


Edited to add: A minimum of 750 ghp.

This message was edited Jun 21, 2009 12:07 PM
jlj072174
Raleigh, NC
(Zone 8a)

June 21, 2009
1:16 PM

Post #6718302

I too suffered with the pea soup green water from algae and couldn't see my fish. I bought a uv light/filter tank combo that can be placed inside or outside the pond, and the water was crystal clear a week later. I purchased mine from Lowes for $99, and it was worth every penny because one year of barley bales would cost me that easily from our local nursery. The fish and frogs also seem quite happy, and I'm happy that I can now see them all when at play besides just when they come up to eat.

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