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Help with algae and weeds
#510710 08/24/19 01:48 PM
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We are located in Southeast Texas (Orange, TX) about 30 miles off the coast and on the Louisiana/Texas border. I dug this pond about 4 years ago when we started building our house to build my property up. The pond is around 0.5 acre and is between 10-12 feet deep with a few shallow shelves. I pretty much know nothing about maintining/keeping up with a pond. We have recently started getting a lot of algae and weeds (shown in the pictures) in our pond. I want to get it cleaned up and keep it clean as it has been kind of neglected with all of my other projects trying to improve our 12 acres we have. So I am looking for some advice on how to clean it up and keep it clean...chemicals, aeriation etc. I do not know where to start. Any help/advice will be appreciated.

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Re: Help with algae and weeds
Keestan31 #515151 12/20/19 04:14 PM
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I used Crystal Plex from the feed store. Its a gallon jug. I poured it in my backpack sprayer and added another gallon of water. then spray the banks as well and surrounding algae. Any algae floating I spray as well. Try to cover the whole surface of the pond. It was $40 and after three days, the pond was clear. We use ours for swimming and it even eliminated the algae on the beach area about four foot below the surface.

Re: Help with algae and weeds
Keestan31 #516634 02/10/20 10:17 PM
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Most of the experts on this forum will tell you the only way to reliably control weeds/algae over the long term is to reduce nutrients going into the pond.

However, that's far easier said than done. My pond had the same issue as yours and there's a cattle ranch across the pond so I assume that manure from the cows was causing the nutrients and thus causing weed/algae growth.

There's nothing I could do about the cows -- I cant afford to buy the ranch out and I sure as hell can't tell the ranch owner that he can't let his cows go to the pond so I was stuck using other methods.

This is what I did:

1. Mizzen copper algaecide appied to 1/5 of the pond every 2 weeks until the entire pond was treated.

2. Added 2 aerators

3. Supplied grass carp at 3 per acre

4. Manually raked/removed the worst areas.

With all 4 of those methods I managed to reduce the weeds/algae from 75% coverage of the pond to zero on the surface and about 10% submerged on the bottom.

I'm sure it will flare up again at some point in the summer and this coming summer I'm going to be a lot more aggressive about manual removal before it becomes overwhelming

Re: Help with algae and weeds
Keestan31 #516652 02/11/20 11:03 AM
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The Basics - Ponds each day tend to naturally collect nutrients and continually recycle them. The rate at which ponds collect nutrients is dependent on where and how the pond is built.

Nutrients grow plants as nature's way of doing things. Keeping a pond clean of weeds/algae is very similar to keeping the same size area of bare dirt as weed free. A very difficult on going project.

There are various tools to keep the "weeds" to a minimum in both ponds and bare dirt areas.

Your 'newish' pond seems to have quite a bit of filamentous algae and very likely some underwater growth. Chemicals can be a quick way to TEMPORARILY reduce the weeds. Nature will always want to have weeds-plants return to 'feed on' and utilize the nutrients. I tend to minimally use chemical algae control because the pond ecosystem has to "process" all the harsh chemicals that are applied to the pond. Most chemicals not only act on the intended target problem but also affect other sensitive living things in the pond biology. ALSO what happens to those chemicals that are continually dumped into a pond with basically no 'flusher' drain??. Chemical fate is an important part of our environment.

I currently like the algae & small weed natural control of using tilapia. They will actively eat a lot of algae and more delicate weeds. Each fish eats around twice its weight a day in algae. Thus the more algae you have the more tilapia one needs. Suggested starting rate is around 30 lbs per acre. Tilapia will convert the weeds to fish biomass plus some manure. Ideally you want the manure to feed a phytoplankton (micro-plant) bloom instead of more visible weeds. As noted a few grass carp (GC) will help eat the submerged weeds. Larger rooted shoreline and submerged plants directly compete with most types of filamentous and micro-algae.

See this link for an example of good naturally balanced pond (RAH Indiana) with minimal algae control problems. Plants compete against plants for nutrients and growing space. NOTE - It is very, very hard to get natural plants established in a pond that has grass carp(GC). Consider that potential problem before stocking GC.
http://forums.pondboss.com/ubbthreads.php?ubb=showflat&Main=39487&Number=514344#Post514344

Look through this PondBoss Q&A archive link to algae types and various control methods.
http://forums.pondboss.com/ubbthreads.php?ubb=showflat&Number=92633#Post92633

Last edited by Bill Cody; 02/11/20 11:26 AM.

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