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Oxygenators keep dying / why is my wildlife pond so murky?

My wildlife pond is now about 3 months old and for the majority of that time it's been a murky puddle. I tried a pond treatment which didn't work and I've kept buying more oxygenators but they all seem to die. The first batch I mostly threw in the pond as instructed on the labels - they all died. The next batch I planted in baskets with just washed gravel in to hold them down... the ones near enough the surface that I can sort of see all seem to be dead. However the other plants - the lilies, water plantain, water forget met not etc are all thriving (bearing in mind they were all plug plants, so have grown massively from what you can see here). There is a LOT of mosquito larvae and beetle larvae, some tiny water snails and the dragonflies visit regularly. It is also the new local public bathes for the birds... I probably get about 40 birds who bathe in it every day! So while I'm still enjoying it I'd really love to get it visually a bit better - it really does look like such a murky puddle. Any ideas on what could be causing the permanently brown water and what I'm doing wrong with the oxygenators? (Ignore the edge mess - that's still a work in progress!)


  • Pete.8Pete.8 Billericay, EssexPosts: 6,542
    The best advice is to wait until it's about 12 months old.
    Nature won't be rushed I'm afraid - the life in your pond will grow and grow and so will the plants eventually  - watch and enjoy and by next year you'll be amazed by what nature can do given a little time
    Knowledge is knowing that a tomato is a fruit.
    Wisdom is not putting it in a fruit salad.
  • WonkyWombleWonkyWomble Posts: 3,446

    This is mine a year from creation.
    It cost me £20 for pond liner and £15 for solar power water feature.  Shallow end is closest in the picture and is a bird bath.
    Other side of log is a stone platform with water feature.  If you zoom you will see Snoop frog  having a shower!
    Pete is right.  Patience is key but your pond is lovely and will soon bloom!
  • Thank you both! I felt that perhaps it's something I'm doing wrong, but perhaps I really do just need to be patient for the water to clear up!
  • GemmaJFGemmaJF Posts: 2,286
    edited June 2020
    It's totally natural, nearly every new ponds goes through this, especially wildlife ponds and particularly in hot weather. 

    I think it should be much more commonly advised to order plants after a pond settles down as this sort of algal bloom can block the light for newly establishing submerged plants.

    Nature will sort it out, but the old tried and trusted method to speed it along, is to chuck in a bail of barley straw. It is still used today, but usually it is discrete bunches of barley straw that come in netted bags or barley extract that is used. 

    Link to the mini straw bails here:

    Just submerge them in the pond, I usually tie a string to the bag and stake them so I can retrieve the netting bag easily when it is used up. It takes a while, but it does work.

  • rachelQrtJHBjbrachelQrtJHBjb South BucksPosts: 687
    I think the murkiness could also be due to the soil on the exposed edge/liner washing into the pond when it rains.
  • BenCottoBenCotto RutlandPosts: 2,403
    Gilla, I have the same issues with my pond and it is about 3 years old. Like you I throw in oxygenators and they die. I plant oxygenators. They die. I was bemoaning my incompetence to my gardener today and she says she has precisely the same problem. 

    As the water warms the blanket weed flourishes and in the past I have chucked in mini bales of barley straw and I cannot say they didn’t work because the blanket weed might have been even worse without them but I would only give them a score of 2/10. By contrast Nishikoi Clear Waters gets 10/10 for blanket weed - it had all gone within three weeks and has not, nearly two months later, returned. Unfortunately my water was still very turbid, and had been since April. Suddenly a few days ago it all cleared as nature found its balance.
  • We have all been there mines looking a funny colour at the moment. Like a previous poster said you just have to give it time, you will be amazed how much your pond will have transformed a year from now. By the way it’s a lovely looking pond.
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