Wisconsin Winter Bog Question


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I'm looking to convert my waterfall into a bog (would be roughly 4' x 6' bog) as well as my ponds top shelf (it runs from 6" deep to 12" deep and is 15" wide). My concern is zone 5A winters in Wisconsin.

Waterfall - In the past I drained the water fall box because I don't run the waterfall in winter (too cold, pipes may freeze, etc). Any suggestions on how to make the bog work if I need to drain it every fall? Do I have any other options besides using it as a bog? Currently it holds lava rocks and filter material. I really don't see running it thru winter as an option. We get several days when the temp is well below zero.

Top Shelf - If I convert the top shelf to a bog, concerned about plants becoming frozen solid in winter. I can "flood" the pond in fall and add about 2" of additional water but that's it. Anything i should do or avoid if I convert the top shelf to a bog? Pond is typically 5" to 6" of ice. Plenty thick to walk on.

Thanks, Troy.
 
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It might help if you could include a picture or drawing of how your set up works.

However, I have fountain pond that I turn off to pump for in the winter, so there is no water running over the three rock shelves. Despite that, and despite having snow land on the plants all the time, my aquatic forget me not, golden Alexander, blue sedge, and dwarf horsetail rush have survived each winter since I planted them three years ago.

As for plants in the water, my dwarf cattails and more blue sedge have survived without problems ever year after being in the water and freezing pretty good.

But then, I live in hardiness zone 6/7ish, and the hardiness zoning in your state ranges from 3-5. Still, there are people here who have ponds in Canada. They can probably answer your question better than I can.
 
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I recently finished my bog and I think I will be turning it off this coming Winter.

Before having the bog, I always turned off my waterfall for the Winter. The reason is that when my pond freezes over, I don't want the falls pouring water on top of the ice. The result might be water flowing over the ice and escaping the pond which would eventually empty the pond. So, I'll be applying this same theory with regards to the bog.

Now, i don't know if the bog itself will freeze solid. That might be another good reason to shut it down. I wonder if there's a way to determine this?

Mostly everything I've read states to turn off the bog for the Winter, but I'd be interested in any responses to your question.
 

mrsclem

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I shut my bogs off in the winter but don't drain the water. The plants freeze but have come back every spring.
 

addy1

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I shut off everything and all plants come back. The bog keeps water in it even when all is off. If the bog dried up completely I am not sure if the plants would survive. The bog does become a block of ice when and if we have a cold winter.
 
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The reason is that when my pond freezes over, I don't want the falls pouring water on top of the ice.
I bet the opposite will happen - our water fall will have a layer of ice, but the water will continue to flow underneath. It's really cool.

We run our waterfall all winter in 5B Chicago - never had pipes freeze. We enjoy our pond all winter long!
 
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I bet the opposite will happen - our water fall will have a layer of ice, but the water will continue to flow underneath. It's really cool.

We run our waterfall all winter in 5B Chicago - never had pipes freeze. We enjoy our pond all winter long!
Ah! I see what you mean. I never figured it that way! That makes sense!
It reminds me of the fountain I have in the middle of the pond. When it gets crazy cold out a dome of ice forms over the cascading water. It's pretty cool seeing the water shooting up within the ice dome.
 
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Exactly! The water forms a sheet of ice but keeps flowing underneath. It's very neat to watch as the ice formations develop and change as the winter goes on. And you never have to worry about that elusive hole in the ice - the moving water takes care of that for you.
 
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Exactly! The water forms a sheet of ice but keeps flowing underneath. It's very neat to watch as the ice formations develop and change as the winter goes on. And you never have to worry about that elusive hole in the ice - the moving water takes care of that for you.
I had always feared that the water would just flow over the ice and escape out onto the ground. I'm just flabbergasted! You got me thinking of it from whole new prospective.
 

addy1

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My bog is so big the surface area really cools the pond. I would be afraid of over chilling the water. And external pump.
Our winters, we never know if we will be cold, warm , wet dry snow no snow. Best and easiest turn it off, stick in a pond breather and say good winter to the fish, they do fine. I watch them on the cam snacking on the plants.
 
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I'm always afraid of freezing pipes and chilling the pond with too much surface disruption.

It was our first winter with the bog last year. We shut it down but it remained full of water.
 
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Here are some photos of the pond. Its a hard plastic waterfall box which I think would survive if if froze solid. Not sure the 3" line, event though its underground, would make it. It sounds like it would be ok to make the first step around the pond into a bog and then flood the pond in fall to help protect the plants in winter.
 

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