First Autumn - leaves galore.

Discussion in 'Newbies to Garden Ponds' started by James_Pond, Sep 26, 2016.

  1. James_Pond

    James_Pond

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    This is the first autumn for my pond and, of course, it's filling up with leaves.

    It's a wildlife pond, so no fish at all and no filter or water feature just plants to keep it healthy.

    I'm taking the approach that, with the best will in the world I'm never going to recover all the leaves that fall in the pond, so whilst I'll pick out any big ones and any day that it's particularly bad, I'm not going to worry about picking out all of the leaves.

    I presume that it's actually a good thing to let some fall in and sink to the bottom.

    Is this the correct approach?
     
    James_Pond, Sep 26, 2016
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  2. James_Pond

    Mmathis TurtleMommy

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    How big is the pond and what plants do you have growing? I have not idea what the correct approach would be, but I do know that when I see a still patch of water, I can usually smell it, as well. I suppose there is a limit or a balance that has to occur and this just might be something you're going to have to experiment with.
     
    Mmathis, Sep 26, 2016
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  3. James_Pond

    James_Pond

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    My pond is roughly 3m x 1.5m. There's no smell and the water is pretty clear. I had some algae problems in early summer, but that's all sorted itself out.
     
    James_Pond, Sep 26, 2016
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  4. James_Pond

    Meyer Jordan Tadpole

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    Wait til Spring. Then you will see the effects of accumulated leaves in a pond.
     
    Meyer Jordan, Sep 26, 2016
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  5. James_Pond

    James_Pond

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    Good effects, or bad? I'd rather not wait if it's going to be bad.
     
    James_Pond, Sep 26, 2016
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  6. James_Pond

    Meyer Jordan Tadpole

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    It won't be good if there is a real accumulation. You will likely see an algae bloom that will make what you saw this Summer trivial.
     
    Meyer Jordan, Sep 26, 2016
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  7. James_Pond

    James_Pond

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    Ok, thanks. I won't wait then, as you suggested. I'll try and deal with it before that happens.
     
    James_Pond, Sep 26, 2016
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  8. James_Pond

    morewater President, Raccoon Haters International

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    Fire a leaf net over it, that'll stop the majority from settling and sinking which will save you the effort of a full-blown clean-out come Spring.
     
    morewater, Sep 26, 2016
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  9. James_Pond

    teeemkay

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    I second the idea of using a leaf net. It is not easy cleaning up decayed leaves from the bottom of the pond when spring comes... you try to scoop them and they just disintegrate, making a bigger mess.
     
    teeemkay, Sep 26, 2016
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  10. James_Pond

    James_Pond

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    How do you get this on safely without affecting any frogs or birds coming into the pond? I want them to come in and not be in danger of getting trapped.
     
    James_Pond, Sep 26, 2016
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  11. James_Pond

    teeemkay

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    My pond is very irregular-shaped, so the net sits on top of the water's surface, not over it, as it is tricky to pin the net down on all ends. Birds can still peck at the water through the net if they are standing on the stones around the pond or by the waterfall. I have never seen frogs by my pond as I'm in a fairly urban area and they are just not around. :) The only wildlife that got stuck in the net last year was a small garter snake--he managed to squeeze through one of the holes in the net.

    I might have hubs help me put the net on today as there are a lot of leaves already falling off our walnut trees and the winds are kicking them up today. I will try to take some pictures once it's installed.
     
    teeemkay, Sep 26, 2016
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  12. James_Pond

    mondotomhead

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    I decided last year to do this also. I thought the leaves would be a great place for the frogs to burrow under for the winter. Never again! Cleaning out those squishy, slimy, horrible smelling leaves was something I never wanted to do again. And I had to pick through those leaves for any snails, newts and dragonfly lavae that might be in them.

    Get a net. You can see some examples of how others have done this by typing leaf net in the search tab.
     
    mondotomhead, Sep 26, 2016
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  13. James_Pond

    teeemkay

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    Here's the net I bought for this year--I think it was about $25 on Amazon and includes plastic pegs for installation. Nets are totally worth the money... only a small amount of leaves ended up on the bottom last year (mostly leaves that dropped in before I put the net on), and I didn't have to worry about someone coming over at least twice a day to clean leaves out of the skimmer net if we went out of town.

    IMG_4409.JPG IMG_4410.JPG IMG_4411.JPG IMG_4412.JPG
     
    teeemkay, Sep 26, 2016
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  14. James_Pond

    Mmathis TurtleMommy

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    You can do like @addy1 did with her netting -- but hers was more to keep herons out, rather than deal with leaves. You put the net supports where they are several feet off the ground, then lay the net over. She has hers where she can draw-string it tight around the edges. The critters like frogs & birds can still get in.
     
    Mmathis, Sep 26, 2016
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  15. James_Pond

    mondotomhead

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    I totally agree to use the nets with the larger holes. That awful berry netting you can buy at Home Depot or Lowes catches on everything and its hard to work with. Little creatures get caught in the berry netting also. I had to cut a gardner snake out of one and it was badly cut. NO BERRY NETTING!
     
    mondotomhead, Sep 26, 2016
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  16. James_Pond

    James_Pond

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    I'm looking at netting then. It seems the way to go. I'm thinking of getting some kind of tunnel effect so that birds and frogs etc can enter at either end still. I know I'll possible get some leaves but I don't want it to be completely enclosed to nature.

    What size mesh holes do you recommend?
     
    James_Pond, Sep 27, 2016
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  17. James_Pond

    mondotomhead

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    Its not so much the mesh hole size its the thickness of the net "strings". The berry netting is very fine and thin...awful stuff. Home Depot and Lowe's have different gauge nets you could check out.

    I also left openings for the birds, frogs, bees and dragonflies. You're trying to keep out the majority of the leaves. If some get it your pond that's ok. You just don't want the entire forest of leaves in there!
     
    mondotomhead, Sep 27, 2016
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  18. James_Pond

    morewater President, Raccoon Haters International

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    A leaf net is designed to keep out larger leaves due to the mesh size. Leaf nets are absolutely useless for leaves such as Locust and for pine needles.

    As to keeping holes open for birds, blah, blah, blah..................if you're going to have a hole, while continually worrying about how all the poor, little animals are going to get a drink, etc., what's the point of putting a leaf net over your pond?

    It's either netted or it's not netted, simple.
     
    morewater, Oct 10, 2016
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  19. James_Pond

    Mmathis TurtleMommy

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    If there's a way to "dome" your net or angle it with a high end - low end, it could help funnel the leaves to the sides of the pond instead of ending up with a dump forming in the middle of the net.
     
    Mmathis, Oct 10, 2016
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  20. James_Pond

    sissy sissy

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    bird bath for birds .I made concrete leaves from my elephant ear leaves and have birdbaths they prefer that way .You can put them any where for the birds .
     

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    sissy, Oct 10, 2016
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