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How to Winterize Your Crofton Garden Pond

According to The Crofton Village Garden Club, it’s important to prepare your garden pond for winter so you can minimize the loss of fish and plants.  This long weekend would be a great time to do this chore, if you haven’t already.

Dave Kemon, the water gardening expert at Homestead Gardens in Davidonsonville, recommends these five steps to get your pond ready for winter:

  1. Water GardenDrain your pond halfway and scoop out all leaves and debris with a net. Fill the pond back up with fresh water and a de-chlorinator if you have chlorine in your water (Stress Coat is recommended).
  2. Bring in all UV filters, lights and clarifiers so they don’t freeze and break. If your outside filters are large, drain all the water out of them and shut them down for the winter. Also shut off all water pumps if you have concerns about the pond freezing them. Finally, add a pond de-icer or raise your pump halfway up.
  3. Cut back all water lilies and hardy bog plants, and bring tropical plants indoors. Remove all water hyacinths and water lettuce so that don’t rot in the pond.
  4. Cover the pond with netting but never lay it flat on the water, or falling leaves will push it down and turn the water dark. Always place your net like a tent using PVC pipes so the leaves fall to the side and frogs can still get up on the ledge.
  5. Switch fish food over to cold weather food, although they only need to be fed through the month of November. There will be enough organic matter in the pond to sustain them through the winter months.

Check the water gardening page of Homestead Gardens website for additional information including a list of items you’ll need for winterizing your garden pond and a list of things NOT to do. 

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