The weather forecast for next week is HOT!
Watch out for water loss from your pond or container pond due to evaporation.
In normal summer months the effect of the sun can cause around 2 to 3 cm of water loss from your pond in a week. Next week this could be more through evaporation and because the plants will use more too.
You need to check for water loss and top up your pond in hot weather:
- Ideally use rainwater from a water butt to avoid adding nutrients or chlorine to the pond water.
- If you have to use tap water add Chlorine Guard (use Chlorine Guard every time you add tap water to the pond). This is an environmentally friendly product based on seaweed extracts that is safe for fish, pets and wildlife.
- Excess water loss will cause distress to fish in your pond
- Wildlife in the top shelf area will become exposed to predators as the water level falls
- Pond plants on the shelf will suffer or die if their roots cannot reach water
- Pond liners will be exposed to strong sunlight and become at risk of splitting
Other hot weather issues:
- Water features and filters may block up with excess algae/blanketweed growing faster in the heat.
- Your pipework may spring a leak by being exposed to the sun and cracking if it is not made from uv stabilised material.
- Moving water features will evaporate too and may run out of water which will allow the pump to run dry and burn out.
- Your pond liner may have been torn or punctured by animal and pet claws as they try to drink from the pond.
- Treat the pond more frequently in hot weather with liquid Extract of Barleystraw or Barley Bio algae control - both are safe, organic methods.
- Make sure your Barleystraw minibale is still active and not going black quicker than usual in the heat. If it is then remove it, add a new one and back up the minibale treatment in the short term with Extract of Barleystraw or Barley Bio during the heat wave.
- Clean the filter and pump more frequently in old pond water to keep all your beneficial bacteria.
- If you can find a hole in the liner - patch it with a piece of liner fixed with a waterproof adhesive.
- Add more waterlilies to your pond so their leaves cover more of the surface area of the water and shade it from the sun's heat.
- Cut back Iris plant foliage to 6" above usual water level. These use up a lot of water so by reducing their height you are reducing the load on the pond's limited water resources. Leave a good 6" stem height though for dragonflies to climb up to leave the pond.
Think, particularly before you go on holiday for a fortnight, if no rain is forecast - a quick fix is to add shade from a gazebo placed above the pond to keep the water cooler and reduce evaporation and blanketweed growth.
You will not be there to see that it may not look so attractive - but it is helping to reduce the problems of these hot temperatures on your pond in your absence.