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Pond algae

Hi, we have the pictured algae getting worse in the pond. Previously any algae was heavier (blanket I think)and we could clear it easily by winding it round a cane. This just falls away. I am keen to get rid of it before it takes hold properly but not sure which type it is to add any solution. Also, don't want to harm the wildlife. Any thoughts would be appreciated.Thanks.


  • DovefromaboveDovefromabove Central Norfolk UKPosts: 77,506
    edited April 2020
    Hi @lornacottier and welcome to the forum 😊

     We use Blagdon barley straw extract,-Dirt-Algae/Barley-Straw-Extract-500ml

    followed up with their Sludgebuster. It works and it is perfectly safe for all wildlife. 
    “I am not lost, for I know where I am. But however, where I am may be lost.” Winnie the Pooh

  • Pete.8Pete.8 Billericay, EssexPosts: 8,574
    Dove recommended the same treatments to me a couple of years ago and I've found both products work well and I still use them.
    So much algae appears at this time of year due to a bit of warm weather and decent sunshine again and the algae taking advantage of the nutrients that have built up in the water over winter.
    Knowledge is knowing that a tomato is a fruit.
    Wisdom is not putting it in a fruit salad.
  • lornacottierlornacottier Posts: 2
    edited April 2020
    Great thanks folks.  We have some of the barley extract in the shed; didn't need it last year but will use it now.
  • AstraeusAstraeus Posts: 271
    Folks, just to resurrect this - with barley straw extract having been banned from sale, what do people use now? We're just starting to get some string algae and I'd like to get on top of it early doors.
  • Pete.8Pete.8 Billericay, EssexPosts: 8,574
    I didn't realize it had been banned.
    I will need some this year and came across this on Amazon and assumed it was the same stuff.
    Obviously not!
    I'll get this stuff and see how it goes.
    I guess the alternative is to buy some barley straw.
    I just resent paying £££ for stuff that blows about in the fields.

    I use Cloverleaf in my koi pond and that works very well - it is safe to use in wildlife ponds - I called and asked them
    It does turn the water milky for a day or 2 then it clears and the blanketweed starts to die. 1 dose a year is usually all that's needed.
    Best used when water temp is at least 10c
    Knowledge is knowing that a tomato is a fruit.
    Wisdom is not putting it in a fruit salad.
  • LynLyn DevonPosts: 19,951
    Mine usually gets like that in the winter but come spring and the plants come to life and the sun gets on it, it disappears. 
    Ive never put anything in it. 
    Gardening on the wild, windy west side of Dartmoor. 

  • thevictorianthevictorian Posts: 419
    I don't use anything on my wildlife pond and this algae tends to be caused by sunny but cold weather, like we had this spring. Once the water warms up and the plants begin to grow strongly, the algae should die away by itself unless you have too many nutrients or not enough plants. 
    If the algae is really thick in spring then it can trap tadpoles and other wildlife but pulling it out whilst you see it is an easy method.

    The banning of barley extract is a bizarre eu law from memory. You can still use barley straw but when made into an extract it was crazily classed as a biocide.
  • Pete.8Pete.8 Billericay, EssexPosts: 8,574
    I'm guessing that as Barley Straw Extract kills algae the manufacturers must now PROVE it's not harmful to other biological organisms.
    The cost of that would be prohibitive so it's no longer available
    Knowledge is knowing that a tomato is a fruit.
    Wisdom is not putting it in a fruit salad.
  • RedwingRedwing Posts: 1,162
    I find that barley straw works, provided you get as much of the blanket weed out using the stick method as possible before putting the barley straw in. If you use barley straw when the pond is chock-a-block with blanket weed it's just too much and doesn't work well IMO.  I use mesh bags for the barley straw.    
    Based in Sussex, I garden to encourage as many birds to my garden as possible.
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