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Saturday, Apr. 30, 2016

Tips on pond management

Wednesday, June 13, 2012

I don't think there is a road you can travel in Clay or Owen Counties where you can't find at least one pond on it.

Many of those ponds are cherished dearly by their owners, who work diligently to maintain their ponds.

For those of you with ponds or those who want a pond, here are some helpful tips from Purdue Extension:

* There are three main types of algae. The first is microscopic algae (commonly thought of as blue-green algae). It appears to look like a swirl of green or yellow-green oil floating on top of the pond. Microscopic algae often occur when there is an abundance of nutrients. To control this problem, it is best to prevent excess nutrients from entering the pond,

* Mat-forming algae is the second type of algae. It is commonly referred to as moss. It will grow in mats around the edges and bottoms of the pond starting in the spring, and

* The final type of algae is Chara. Chara is often a calcified, brittle plant that is rooted. Most algae problems can be controlled by using copper products.

However, you should not use copper products if there are trout or koi found in the pond.

Duckweed and watermeal are two free-floating plants that can wreak havoc on a pond.

These two plants are extremely small (duckweed is one-eighth to one-fourth inch in diameter).

You can tell these two plants apart by looking for roots. Duckweed has small roots that hang in the water while watermeal has no roots.

Both of these plants can completely cover a pond and cause oxygen depletion to occur.

Waterlilies, watershield and American pondweed are three examples of rooted-floating plants.

Each of these plants have underground stems, called rhizomes, from where new plants sprout.

The leaves and flowers of these species then float on top of the water.

American pondweed has long slender leaves that are two-three inches long.

They will then be attached to their roots by long petioles.

Waterlilies and watershield are similar in appearance.

However, you can tell them apart since watershield has smaller leaves and petioles that are attached in the center of the leaf.

If you are interested in finding out more about pond management, then you should attend the upcoming Pond Workshop June 19, from 6:30-8 p.m., at the Owen County 4-H Exhibit Hall in Spencer.

Nathan Long, Vice President Lake Management with Aquatic Control, will be there talking about basic pond management, ranging from aeration, fisheries and plant management.

This program is free and we encourage all pond owners and future pond owners to attend.

As always, if you have any questions or would like information on any agriculture, horticulture, or natural resource topic, then please contact your local Purdue Extension Office at 448-9041 in Clay County, or 812-829-5020 in Owen County, or reach me directly at smith535@purdue.edu.

Purdue University is an equal opportunity/equal access/affirmative action institution.

Upcoming opportunities available to you through Purdue Extension include:

* June 4 -- Owen County Extension Board meeting, Owen County Extension Office,

* June 10-14 -- Owen County 4-H Horse Camp,

* June 16 -- Open Horse Pleasure Show at the Owen County Fairgrounds,

* June 17-19 -- 4-H Camp, and

* June 19 -- Pond Management, Owen County 4-H Exhibit Hall, 6:30-8 p.m.