I'll have a Blue Christmas

Well, I won't be having a blue Christmas, but my pond will. You see, although there is apparently some debate about the effects of adding beneficial bacteria to garden ponds, I do it.

I'm especially diligent in the winter, when leaves and other excess organic matter can turn the pond water chemistry inhospitable or even toxic for the fish.


If you're in a cold-climate garden like I am, you need to use a special winter-blend of bacteria too:

The type I use in winter is liquid, quite smelly, and as you can see quite blue. The bacteria it contains help to safely break down the organic matter in the water -- even underneath the ice.

I have to add more every two weeks or so but have to vary the schedule when the pond is ice-covered...

...but as you can see our brief warm-up (with temperatures in the upper 60's F) has taken care of most of the ice for me right now. It was raining when I dumped the bacteria so I couldn't linger, but I did see a couple of orange fish swimming around.

I can't wait for later in the winter when the water gets crystal clear and the sunlight lets me see pretty much any of the fish I want too -- I have no idea how many of them there are right now and would love to get a better idea.

If you have a pond in your garden, do you add bacteria?

My posts will be sporadic over the next week or so, as holiday activities leave me with little time for writing posts. Please forgive me if I miss a couple of days. Happy Holidays!


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Lisa  – (December 22, 2013 at 12:56 PM)  

We do add bacteria. I know some ponders think it's snake oil, but I'm a believer. We try to keep to a regular schedule (I have a calendar reminder on my phone) but the cold weather months are more challenging! All I know is we have very few leaves or other debris left in the spring - coincidence? Maybe! But the fact that bacteria aids in the breakdown of organic matter is indisputable, so to me it makes sense to give it a boost!

Happy holidays! While others are dreaming of sugar plums, I'll be seeing visions of seed packets and compost!

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