The following are recommended tips for preparing a pond for the Fall seasons.
- There may be an increasing numbers of dead or brown leaves this time of year, so prune them off all of your plants. Your lilies – tropical and hardy – should still be going strong, at least until the first heavy frost.
- Stop fertilizing when the weather becomes cooler. This lets the plants know the season is coming to an end.
- As the evening temperatures begin to fall, this is a good time to transition to cold water fish food. When the water temperature is around 55 F° (10° C), stop feeding your fish. Continuing to feed them could cause health problems or death for them, since their digestive systems are beginning to slow down for the winter.
- As leaves on trees begin to turn those beautiful fall colors, it’s time to put a pond net over your water feature. This will prevent you from having to empty the debris net every day to keep up with the influx of leaves. Some of them may sneak by and sink to the bottom, so try to remove as many as you can as fast as you can.
- If you leave too much organic matter in your pond, like leaves, the water may turn brown. If this happens, remove the excess debris and add activated carbon to clear the water.
- As it gets colder, your aquatic plants will have all but died for the season. Now you can cut back the dead plant material and remove the tropicals. Cut back the cattails above the water level, or better yet, leave them up to see how magnificent they look in the winter.
- If you live up north, where the surface of the pond freezes, you’ll need to prepare for winter by deciding whether you want to keep your pond running or shut it down. Click here for winterization instructions.