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When that first hint of fall chills your skin, it is time to start the process of winterizing your pond landscape to that it can withstand the harsh winter months and be ready for your enjoyment next season. There are several areas of pond winterizing that need to be accounted for:


The quality of your pond water significantly impinges on the health of those creatures living in the pond. As soon as autumn leaves begin to drop into the pond, remove the debris so that the rotting organic matter will not raise the level of ammonia, a colorless pungent gas that harms fish and gives the pond a stench. If you find your ammonia level has already been raised, replace one quarter of the water with fresh water (specifically a de-chlorinating product). Be sure to give your filter one last cleaning following water replacement in your artificial pond.

Zeolite is a natural mineral that has the ability to absorb ammonia and keep your pond unsullied year round. Oxygen is also essential for maintaining a healthy pond ecosystem, so be sure to keep an opening (hole rather than crack) in the ice for the duration of winter for the landscape to breathe. Landscape suppliers of pond equipment offer aeration pumps that cycle oxygen in the winter.


It is important to trim back your pond landscape plants for winter, remove algae and scrub the pond pottery. Move any pots into a deep section of the pond below potential ice formation (at least 8 inches).


Pond landscapes are frequently filled with koi and goldfish, particularly as they are fish that can withstand winter and cold water provided that you take a few precautions, that is. Fish expel the by-products of ammonia and carbon monoxide into a pond and as such can render the pond environment toxic if oxygen is not well circulated. As the water in the winter becomes progressively colder, fish hibernate and require less and less food (i.e. the amount of food required is proportional to temperature). At 50 degrees, the fish should cease to be fed as at full hibernation any food in their digestive tract becomes toxic.