What steps do you take to winterize your pond in zones 7 and down?

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Thank you. What size aerator do you use. And when you say you run the pond year rou d does it not ice over? Are you in a warmer climate?
We just bought a new aerator this year. It's an Aquascape ProAir 20. A real bubbling fool. But we don't generally run it - I just move it so it's where I need it in case we have to turn it on. I also have a de-icer that I put in place in case we need it. Both would only be necessary if we had to turn the pond off for some reason - like a pump or plumbing failure.

Warmer climate? No! We live near Chicago. And yes, the pond freezes over, but the waterfall keeps the water moving under the ice and we get some spectacular ice formations as a result.


February 2018.JPG
Jan 1, 2018.JPG


December 2017 and January 2018 - cold and snowy pond!
 
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Oh and we hook the hose right up to the outside spigot - not fun when it's cold, but it's doable. The ice and snow helps a lot in our experience to cut down on evaporation - when it's cold and the pond is open, we lose a lot more water.
 

mrsclem

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No need to plug in heaters or pond breathers till ice starts to cover the entire surface. I bring my aerators in for the winter. The lines freeze up too easily. Every year is different. Last year we had little snow and very cold and windy weather. I had the drain on my 150 stocktank freeze and explode.
 
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Oh and we hook the hose right up to the outside spigot - not fun when it's cold, but it's doable. The ice and snow helps a lot in our experience to cut down on evaporation - when it's cold and the pond is open, we lose a lot more water.
In Utah when you use the outdoor spicket during the middle of the Winter you run into the risk of your lines bursting. Is that something that happens there as well?
 
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In Utah when you use the outdoor spicket during the middle of the Winter you run into the risk of your lines bursting. Is that something that happens there as well?
Before winter, we shut off the water to our outside spigots and let them drain. If I had to use them during the winter, I'd shut the water off and let it drain when finished. That would prevent the pipes from bursting at our house... I HOPE - LOL.
 

callingcolleen1

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I run my ponds year round in one of the harshest climates on the planet here in ice cold Canada. We usually get a hard winter with temperatures falling below -40 at least once or twice a year, and last year was extra long and harsh with extra cold periods that just never let up. I do cover most of the ponds with a cold frame so that way I can get away with using just one 1500 watt heater for all four large size ponds. I run about 4500 gallons of water between all four connecting ponds. I also do video every month so you can follow me too on my winter thread...

 
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Do you shut off your main pump and what size is the small pump I read somewhere that a 300gph pump prevents the water from freezing better than a 2500gph?
Yes, main pump is shut off. I leave it in the pond because I have heard that taking it out every year will dry the seals. I then use, I think 500GPH pump through the winter. I put it on my plant shelf and it keeps an opening all winter. I have no attachments on it, I just let it break the surface.
 
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I also live in Zone 6b (Haymarket VA). I leave the stretchy fabric hose out in laundry room for winter pond fill up. The outside hose bib sits under the outside dryer vent outlet, so not a problem re freezing and I time my fill ups when weather is above freezing during the day. I keep my waterfall on during winter. I have a heater which switches on at a certain temperature. I use a commercial Fall Pond maintenance product when weather turns colder.

However, I do not muck out the leaves that escape the leaf net. One early spring I scooped up the remaining leaves and woke up by hand sized bullfrog, so now I leave it in but then I'm usually late in the early spring and I end up with fish egg jelly in the muck if I wait to long. Should I be clearing out the bottom totally? some of the posts sounded like that would be better.
 
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I also live in Zone 6b (Haymarket VA). I leave the stretchy fabric hose out in laundry room for winter pond fill up. The outside hose bib sits under the outside dryer vent outlet, so not a problem re freezing and I time my fill ups when weather is above freezing during the day. I keep my waterfall on during winter. I have a heater which switches on at a certain temperature. I use a commercial Fall Pond maintenance product when weather turns colder.

However, I do not muck out the leaves that escape the leaf net. One early spring I scooped up the remaining leaves and woke up by hand sized bullfrog, so now I leave it in but then I'm usually late in the early spring and I end up with fish egg jelly in the muck if I wait to long. Should I be clearing out the bottom totally? some of the posts sounded like that would be better.

Thank you quick question about your question should you be clearing out the bottom or cleaning out the bottom? The one letter makes a lot of difference if it is a typo. I plan to vacuum the bottom and clean everything as much as possible to prevent any toxins from building up. But I would not remove (non plant) items.
 
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Great thread, I will likely try a few things and see what works best. I don't want to get caught by surprise and more so I don't want to suffer preventable fish loss. I had been wanting an aerator so I picked up a Pondmaster AP60 got a great deal on it and a 750 watt K&H Thermo-pond de-icer. I will likely use the aerator on one shelf and run a 300gph pump on another side and put the de-icer somewhere. I want to treat it kind of like a test for the first year and see which works best with my pond. I really want to put a heater in the skimmer and run the bog year round but I am not sure that will work. I do have an extra heater so I might give that a shot and keep the de-icer pressure the aerator near the entrance to the skimmer.

Found this and liked it I will likely do something similar with what I have.

https://www.thepondguy.com/product/k-and-h-perfect-climate-floating-or-submersible-pond-de-icer?p=CSE&CAWELAID=730009880000006835&gclid=Cj0KCQjw5s3cBRCAARIsAB8ZjU0eXLouyNM-4Z_hMCRYIq5L-KDTZInMrvwNx2ShlNwAm9AGwarGTN4aAl82EALw_wcB#
 
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Jhn

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@jschult2 I would clean muck/leaves out of pond bottom from the summer/early fall before the fish start to slow down. Then wait until mid/late spring to clean the late fall/winter buildup of leaves(depends on amount of mulm built up on bottom). If a lot of silt/mulm, reason being it lets the fish come completely out of their winter torpor, during this early spring period they are weakest and more prone to getting sick if water quality is changed. If minor amount of leaves, I would just scoop out whenever.
 

sissy

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I guess now the question will be what do we do to protect our ponds from hurricanes .High winds and lots of rain and power outages are a factor that need to be addressed now .I know I am worried more about my pond and fish than my house .I have insurance on my house but the pond is a whole different thing .:(it scares me what could happen
 
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@Lisak1 does the proair 20 pump sit inside the pond?
No. But it's supposed to be built to sit outdoors year round. Our previous pump was technically supposed to be inside (difficult to accomplish) or under cover. We had it under a plastic tote for about the first year - then the tote deteriorated in the sun, and it was MOSTLY under cover, then sort of under cover, then not under cover at all! But it worked great the whole time. We just decided we wanted something with a little more OOOMPH!
 
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I guess now the question will be what do we do to protect our ponds from hurricanes .High winds and lots of rain and power outages are a factor that need to be addressed now .I know I am worried more about my pond and fish than my house .I have insurance on my house but the pond is a whole different thing .:(it scares me what could happen
Can you put a screen or lattice over top of your pond to keep the fish from being washed out?
 

addy1

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Can you put a screen or lattice over top of your pond to keep the fish from being washed out?
A friend of mine in Louisiana did that for a hurricane years back. She put tight net/deer fencing over the pond. If I recall right she put wood, cinder blocks etc to hold it in place. If she had not done that all of her fish would have been gone. The flood waters were 2 feet over her normal pond level.
 
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