Before you dump chemicals into your pond to combat pond weeds or algae, read the following information! There are alternatives to chemical pond weed removal. We advise against using chemicals in ponds, rivers, lakes, and other small bodies of water because they ultimately ruin water quality and contribute to the problem of eutrophication.
As pond weeds die and decompose, they release chemicals they’ve taken in, the same ones you’ve added to the water. Decomposing plant matter increases the amount of organic sediment on the bottom of the pond and in doing so depletes the dissolved oxygen. In the absence of oxygen, anaerobic bacteria proliferate in bottom sediment. These naturally occurring bacteria digest organic sediments and dead pond weeds, but then release toxic gases into the water that can kill beneficial insects and aerobic bacteria. Your fish and wildlife may then die as a result of this oxygen depletion. Adding chemicals to your pond may result in short-term aesthetic improvements, but ultimately worsen the accumulation of muck, nutrients, and toxins that accumulate over time. This has adverse effects on the health of your fish, quality of water, and recreational opportunities. Chemicals are not a long-term solution to improving the ecological well-being of any waterbody.
There are a host of other factors that contribute to the conditions that may tempt lakefront property owners and associations to use herbicides to control plant and algae growth. In particular, there may be systemic causes in the watershed that worsen the problem. In particular, housing developments with inadequate erosion barriers or catchment basins contribute nutrient runoff into streams, lakes, and ponds. Fertilizer, organic and inorganic sediments wash into watersheds and cause the rapid growth of undesirable vegetation, algal blooms, lack of pond oxygen, increasing water temperatures, bad smelling pond odors, and dead fish and wildlife.
Natural Alternative to Chemicals for Pond Weed and Algae Control
To combat pond weeds, we recommend combinations of inversion oxygenation systems (commonly known as aeration systems) and bioaugmentation programs. In any natural pond ecosystem, there are natural processes that restore oxygen, but inversion and oxygenation supplements this process by counteracting the oxygen depletion brought about by excess nutrients and anaerobic conditions on the bottom. Aeration is the process of adding more oxygen to a pond to improve water quality, which fish and other aquatic animals require to thrive. Aerobic bacteria also thrive off of oxygen and can help eliminate pollution and transform the ecological system from one that is continually degraded to one that is continually improving and sustainable.
Clean-Flo is expert at designing these systems and restoration programs. Once air diffusion equipment is added to a pond, the dissolved oxygen concentrations throughout the waterbody increase dramatically, and water quality quickly improves. Anaerobic bacteria is replaced by aerobic bacteria, accelerating the decomposition of organic matter that has accumulated by decaying vegetation and algae. The noxious gases and nutrient release caused by anaerobic decomposition cease.
Using a natural system to reduce pond weeds contributes to a healthier pond ecosystem because it is based on the natural principle that ponds are self-cleaning and can restore themselves using their own natural processes. Normally, ponds keep themselves clean and free of excess pond weeds because they contain ecosystems, with food chains of organisms that absorb excess nutrients. Chemical applications erode this delicate balance and contribute only worsening conditions and increasing weed and algae growth. Inversion oxygenation and biological augmentation supplement the natural process until it becomes self-sustaining again.
Ready to Get Started with Pond Aeration?
Contact us today to learn more about how to reduce pond weeds, reduce and prevent organic sediment accumulation, and improve the ecological health of your pond.