Home >> Water Garden Information >> algae in your water garden
Some algae in your pond is good. Fish do best in healthy water that contains algae. Algae, however, is considered excessive if you can't see your hand 12 inches under the water's surface. There are a number of ways you can combat algae build up in your water garden.
You may try limiting the amount of fish food, because fish food, eaten and uneaten, contains nitrogen which converts to nitrites. Algae thrive on nitrite.
If your water garden contains fish, you need to be careful applying algae-control agents because decaying algae consume oxygen which may cause the fish to suffocate.
Barley straw can prevent algae growth if it is added to the water garden in the spring, before algae start growing.
Black or blue dye is popular with some water gardeners as it sets off flowers and foliage and makes the water seem deeper, cleaner, and more reflective. Dye also provides protection for fish from predatory birds, but fish remain visible to human observers down to about a foot.
Salt can work to wake up lethargic fish while harming algae, bacteria, and parasites. Use a pound of sea or solar salt for every hundred gallons of pond water. Salt doesn't evaporate, so only use this treatment once until the pond is drained.
Ultraviolet clarifiers or ultraviolet sterilizers kill suspended algae, bacteria, and other microorganisms that can flow through the clarifier. (An ultraviolet clarifier can only kill organisms that flow through the UV chamber). Clarifiers can also harm beneficial bacteria, but only if they get into the UV chamber. Bacteria that live on the sides and bottoms of the pond will not be affected. An ultraviolet clarifier should be used alongside aquatic plants, otherwise you will have too many nitrites and this will harm the fish.