Filter Issues.


brokensword

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That is undoubtedly good advice j.w. but a bog filter will, I assume, take a few months to get going. I'll have a Goggle re bog filters and see what I can see. Many thanks, Brian
if you get the right plants and it's not winter, your bog can be fully operational very quickly. For the most part, you want fast growing, shallow rooted plants, i.e. creeping jenny, parrot's feather, pennywort, forget-me-not, or water cress. Deep rooted ones also work, i.e. various iris, but they are a bit slower for the process and need heavy thinning once in a while. But no, it would not be months as long as you've got good weather. The plants are for NITRATES while the gravel is for conversion of ammonia to nitrites to nitrates.
 
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Hi Brokensword, Many thanks for your advice. I was also thinking of adding reeds (as reed beds are commonly used to purify water) and Umbrella Plants Cyperus alternifolius as well. What do you think? Regards, Brian M
 

brokensword

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Hi Brokensword, Many thanks for your advice. I was also thinking of adding reeds (as reed beds are commonly used to purify water) and Umbrella Plants Cyperus alternifolius as well. What do you think? Regards, Brian M
reeds (like some iris) will definitely work but be aware of their growth and thin them out periodically. For instance, I have yellow flag iris and I have to cut the mass in half to 3/4 every fall or it'll take over and thoroughly clog my bog. Keep them contained, is what I'm advising. BUT! still get the low growing, shallow rooting plants as they are much easier to thin and grow much faster (hence, taking up nitrates faster).
 

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That sounds straightforward. The next issue is that I'd like a container that has "window box" proportions and is made from fish friendly material such as HDTPE 2 or 5. A quick Google at window boxes doesn't show up any of these. Maybe I could line the window box with pond liner. What do you think?
I have used play,tee boxes on my pond for years. They are designed for growing flowers and vegetables so they are safe for fish.
 
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reeds (like some iris) will definitely work but be aware of their growth and thin them out periodically. For instance, I have yellow flag iris and I have to cut the mass in half to 3/4 every fall or it'll take over and thoroughly clog my bog. Keep them contained, is what I'm advising. BUT! still get the low growing, shallow rooting plants as they are much easier to thin and grow much faster (hence, taking up nitrates faster).
[/QUOTE
reeds (like some iris) will definitely work but be aware of their growth and thin them out periodically. For instance, I have yellow flag iris and I have to cut the mass in half to 3/4 every fall or it'll take over and thoroughly clog my bog. Keep them contained, is what I'm advising. BUT! still get the low growing, shallow rooting plants as they are much easier to thin and grow much faster (hence, taking up nitrates faster).
Thanks again for the great advice. I think I'll give reeds a miss or maybe just plant one. Regards, Brian
 
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I appear to have got confused about where I write my replies. Apologies. Dear Brokensword, Many thanks for the advice re reeds, maybe I'll plant one and keep a close eye on it.

mrsclem, As a Brit I have to confess that I don't know what play, tee boxes are. We may have them in England but the term is unfamiliar to me . Could you describe them or better still post a photo. Many thanks, Brian
 
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That is undoubtedly good advice j.w. but a bog filter will, I assume, take a few months to get going. I'll have a Goggle re bog filters and see what I can see. Many thanks, Brian
When I built my bog this Spring, the water went from solid pea soup green to crystal clear within a week of starting up the bog.
Previous to the bog startup I could only see my fish when they came to the surface to eat.
After startup of the bog I could see clearly three feet down as I said, within a week! It is absolutely amazing. And that was even before any of the plants in the bog were established. It was just the gravel filtering and colonizing the beneficial bacteria.

My bog is a lot bigger than yours needs to be since my pond is a bit under 1800 gallons.
You can build a very simple bog with a window box planter or a small stock tank. A PVC pipe with slits cut into it laying in the bottom of your container covered with pea gravel. The water gets pumped from the pond through the under gravel PVC pipe, then rises up through the gravel and flows back to the pond. Plants are grown right in the gravel, no pots. Your container can sit right at the edge or partially over your pond so that the water pours back into the pond. If necessary, you can cut a small notch in the container top edge as a low point for the water to flow out of and into the pond.
If this sounds complicated, it's not. It's very simple and you won't regret it. You will have crystal clear water with zero maintenance. No rinsing of filter pads every other day. Just sit back and enjoy your pond.

Any questions?...just ask...
 
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Here's a link to my bog build. It is a way larger scale than what you need, but a general look at how it is constructed. Keep in mind, yours will just be a small watertight container such as a plastic window planter box or stock tank. Anything that will hold water. You can also build something out of wood, but you will need to line it with a rubber liner to hold the water. Don't use anything that is galvanized without a liner. Galvanized products are said to be harmful to fish.

 
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More reading on bog filters...this is addy's extensive bog building showcase...a lot of information.

 
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When I built my bog this Spring, the water went from solid pea soup green to crystal clear within a week of starting up the bog.
Previous to the bog startup I could only see my fish when they came to the surface to eat.
After startup of the bog I could see clearly three feet down as I said, within a week! It is absolutely amazing. And that was even before any of the plants in the bog were established. It was just the gravel filtering and colonizing the beneficial bacteria.

My bog is a lot bigger than yours needs to be since my pond is a bit under 1800 gallons.
You can build a very simple bog with a window box planter or a small stock tank. A PVC pipe with slits cut into it laying in the bottom of your container covered with pea gravel. The water gets pumped from the pond through the under gravel PVC pipe, then rises up through the gravel and flows back to the pond. Plants are grown right in the gravel, no pots. Your container can sit right at the edge or partially over your pond so that the water pours back into the pond. If necessary, you can cut a small notch in the container top edge as a low point for the water to flow out of and into the pond.
If this sounds complicated, it's not. It's very simple and you won't regret it. You will have crystal clear water with zero maintenance. No rinsing of filter pads every other day. Just sit back and enjoy your pond.

Any questions?...just ask...
Dear Poconojoe, thanks to yourself and your fellow bog filter enthusiasts I'm enormously relieved that I can improve my fishes' life in a relatively simple way by using home made stuff. I'm going to Google my way round to getting appropriate planter boxes, plastic piping, pea gravel and marginal plants. Massive thanks all round, I am now one happy Brit! Brian M
 
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When I built my bog, my pipe feeding the bog goes over the wall between the bog and pond. It is mostly hidden by stones. I didn't make any penetrations in the rubber liner.
If you find the need to penetrate the waterproof container that you are using, I highly recommend using a bulkhead fitting for a water tight seal. They are inexpensive and come in many sizes to fit with whatever size PVC pipe you choose to use. They are two parts that screw together with a gasket. Some have interior threads which you can screw your pipe into and some don't have threads which you can glue your PVC pipe to.
 
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Dear Poconojo, I was thinking of building the bog in a container made of fish friendly plastic which would take away the need for a liner. I had a look online at some animal feed troughs and just wrote to the manufacturer to make sure that the HDPE it's made from is the appropriate one. Regards, Brian M.
 
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Dear Poconojo, I was thinking of building the bog in a container made of fish friendly plastic which would take away the need for a liner. I had a look online at some animal feed troughs and just wrote to the manufacturer to make sure that the HDPE it's made from is the appropriate one. Regards, Brian M.
Sounds good.
Thinking about what size your bog should be. Generally, if you have fish, they say your bog surface area should be at least 30% of your pond surface area.
12 inches of pea gravel is the recommended depth. Try to have extra height above your gravel in case the water level rises for some reason.
 

brokensword

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Dear Poconojo, I was thinking of building the bog in a container made of fish friendly plastic which would take away the need for a liner. I had a look online at some animal feed troughs and just wrote to the manufacturer to make sure that the HDPE it's made from is the appropriate one. Regards, Brian M.
the tub should be fine; my liner is made from hdrpe.
 
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Hi Poconojo, thanks yet again for your advice, 12" of pea gravel and 30% of the surface area of the pond sounds fine. plus an extra couple of inches of trough above the top of the gravel Am I right in thinking that the pipes that carry water from the pond should be set up drilled or part sawed to let the water through and be fixed together on the bottom of the bog filter trough under the pea gravel? I was thinking of tilting the trough very slightly so that the water cleaned by the plants then rises up and returns to the pond via a pipe fitted to the top of the nearest edge of the trough and maybe I could fit a sponge filter in there to trap any debris to prevent it returning to the pond. I'll have a good look at everyone's links to their own set ups before I start making my own. Thanks again everyone, Brian M.
 
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brokensword

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Hi Poconojo, thanks yet again for your advice, 12" of pea gravel and 30% of the surface area of the pond sounds fine. plus an extra couple of inches of trough above the top of the gravel Am I right in thinking that the pipes that carry water from the pond should be set up drilled or part sawed to let the water through and be fixed together on the bottom of the bog filter trough under the pea gravel? I was thinking of tilting the trough very slightly so that the water cleaned by the plants then rises up and returns to the pond via a pipe fitted to the top of the nearest edge of the trough and maybe I could fit a sponge filter in there to trap any debris to prevent it returning to the pond. I'll have a good look at everyone's links to their own set ups before I start making my own. Thanks again everyone, Brian M.
you've got the basic idea. Monitor your output pipe return to the pond; make sure it's enough so there's no backup. And I'd not put anything between the bog and pond as if it fills up and you're not aware, the water could rise high enough and begin leaking out of your tub bog. The idea of a bog is that it is a bio filter, not a mechanical filter. You can pre-filter, though, but I'd not 'post' filter. And the idea of keeping some height re liner or tub is that as the gravel starts to fill with either debris or roots, that the water will not have as easy a path out and will rise higher than you first anticipate. By having this extra height, you're guarding against this.
 
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you've got the basic idea. Monitor your output pipe return to the pond; make sure it's enough so there's no backup. And I'd not put anything between the bog and pond as if it fills up and you're not aware, the water could rise high enough and begin leaking out of your tub bog. The idea of a bog is that it is a bio filter, not a mechanical filter. You can pre-filter, though, but I'd not 'post' filter. And the idea of keeping some height re liner or tub is that as the gravel starts to fill with either debris or roots, that the water will not have as easy a path out and will rise higher than you first anticipate. By having this extra height, you're guarding against this.
Got It!!!! Thanks yet again. Brian
 
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You got the basics.
No filter after the bog. As mentioned, if you did add a filter and it clogged, your water would be backing up and overflowing out of the bog.

If you decide to drill any holes in the "tub", I would advise the use of a bulkhead fitting for a perfect seal. I think I mentioned that before.

There are a couple ways you can build your under gravel manifold pipe. You can drill holes or cut slits in your manifold pipe. If you cut slits, cut them 1/3 through the PVC pipe. I spaced mine 1-1/2 inches apart. I have two manifold pipes each is around 10 feet long. Since your setup is much smaller, you might want them spaced closer.

You can face the holes (or slits) up or down. It seems to be a matter of opinion on that choice. I faced mine up, figuring they might get blocked if any sediment collected on the bottom.

I have a clean-out stack at the end of each manifold pipe. (I have two manifold pipes). The end of the pipes have a 90 degree fitting facing up. The pipes end just above the surface of the gravel. I have a screw cap on each one.
If the water returning to the pond slows down, I'll turn off the pump, unscrew the cap, turn the pump back on and watch black water shoot out for a few seconds. (I shoot it into a nearby flower bed). This forces out anything that may have collected inside the manifold pipe. After that, the water runs full force.

I keep a rope tied to my pump for easy removal and to keep it off the bottom. This prevents the pump from picking up heavy debris that has settled on the bottom. I use a net to scoop that stuff out.

Oh, the water traveling through your bog should be relatively slow for best filtration.
 
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addy1

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All great advice above!
 

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