How to clean

Discussion in 'Water Features' started by wurkn with amish, Dec 8, 2009.

  1. wurkn with amish

    wurkn with amish LawnSite Senior Member
    Messages: 662

    I finally got aound to ordering my test kit, should be here by friday. I haven't forgotten about you' all lol. If it is contaminated I think I've got him convinced to shut the upper feed off.

    Stay tuned....
  2. wurkn with amish

    wurkn with amish LawnSite Senior Member
    Messages: 662

    Ok I finally tested in three places: I tested in order; hardness,alk, ph, NO2, NO3

    1st 2nd 3rd
    upper pond waterfall main pond 120 180 120
    180 180 180
    7.0 7.0 7.0
    0 0 0
    0 0 0

    So apparently everything is good to go. Maybe talk them into more plants like said before? A bubbler aerator? beneficial bacterial to eat muck and suspended particles?:confused::dizzy:
  3. wurkn with amish

    wurkn with amish LawnSite Senior Member
    Messages: 662

    man that post didnt turn out how I wanted it to.....
    upper pond ---120, 180, 7.0, 0, 0
    waterfall----180, 180, 7.0, 0, 0
    main pond----120, 180, 7.0, 0, 0
    I used Pentair test strips
  4. tadpole

    tadpole LawnSite Bronze Member
    Messages: 1,221

    You should have also tested for NH4 (Ammonium). The other results seem OK except for the NO3 (Nitrate). I can't believe that you show a '0' reading for this compound. The complete absence of Nitrate in an aquatic environment is very rare in even heavily filtered & planted lined ponds, and practically unheard of in an earth-bottom. Just the normal run-off from rain and/or irrigation will create an organic load in the water column. I would definitely test for Ammonia and retest for NO2 and NO3 in about 4 weeks. Check the expiration dates on the Test Strips.
    Muck is normal in an earth-bottom, not usually a problem causer.
    Turbid water can be easily cleared with Gypsum.
  5. mdlwn1

    mdlwn1 LawnSite Silver Member
    Messages: 2,443

    Im going through a similar situation with a 1mil gallon pond only my wonderful algea is brown.....i would kill for green algea. I will tell you though, my lab sent back many more readings than what you tested for and they were far more accurate than what had been tested locally.
  6. tadpole

    tadpole LawnSite Bronze Member
    Messages: 1,221

    Lab conducted tests are by far the most accurate and they can test for many, many parameters that are not possible with a hobbyist Test Kit. However, THEY AIN'T CHEAP!! Most clients won't pay that kind of fee. I invested in a Bench Photometer and charge for water testing; less than half of what a lab would charge and the customers still fuss.
    An interesting fact about algae, at least to me, is that the dominant specie of algae in a pond, especially larger ones, may change from year to year. This is also true, in many cases, of pond weeds.
    Nature is amazingly intricate and dynamic and will befuddle and bewilder anyone who tries to outguess it, even the experts.
  7. wurkn with amish

    wurkn with amish LawnSite Senior Member
    Messages: 662

    tadpole thats what I thought when I saw the reading to......
    My kit said it was unecessary to test for ammonium because its a by product of NO2??
  8. tadpole

    tadpole LawnSite Bronze Member
    Messages: 1,221

    That is completely false! Ammonium is considered the base of the Nitrogen cycle.

    Ammonium > Nitrite > Nitrate as indicated in the graphic below.

    Nitrogen Cycle.jpg
  9. wurkn with amish

    wurkn with amish LawnSite Senior Member
    Messages: 662

    Ha ha ha, we had that same pic in our science book back in school!

    on a different note:
    my neighbor has a pond about this size, his pond guy told him bottom aeration will cure problems like this and reduce muck. His reasoning, the sediment will float toward the overflow pipe and work its way out that way. get rid of that and the algea goes away. Does this sound feasible or is he just trying to sell an unecessary product?
    I'm going to put in marginal plants..... any suggestions on good ones? Use some type of algecide on the falls itself
  10. tadpole

    tadpole LawnSite Bronze Member
    Messages: 1,221

    Bottom aeration's only purpose is to live up to it's name; aerate the bottom of the pond by creating a vertically rotating current of water which will continuously expose new water to the pond surface to be oxygenated by natural gas transfer. If you are looking to remove 'Muck', the pond should be dredged by a professional. Removing muck the way you described will only cause erosion of the bottom which will eventually advance to the edges of the pond causing collapse.

    Most any marginal plants will work. Try to put in a good diversity. Stay away from the common Cattail!!!

    Your test results still have me baffled. Algae feeds on Nitrates. Your test results show "0" Nitrates. How can you have algae? It's like growing a vegetable garden in the barren desert without any fertilizer. It can't be done. If you have algae, you have Nitrates at a fairly decent level. The more algae you have the higher the Nitrates. The only other possibility would be that you have a high Phosphate level. Have you observed any 'Foaming' around the base of the waterfall. This is usually a sign of Phosphates.

    I can't suggest an algaecide because I don't use them.

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