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Solar powered pond pumps

Has anyone got one of these? I have an algae bloom in my new pond,not helped by the driest September since records began apparently and trying to cut corners by not using aquatic compost. I like the idea but should a wildlife pond really have moving water? The ones I've looked at online seem to work ok but have a solar panel up to 700mm high. A bit of an eyesore....



  • Pete.8Pete.8 Billericay, EssexPosts: 6,280

    Hi Fishy - it's likely the bloom is due to your pond being new and there being an abundance of algae food in the water

    algae are simple plants that feed on nutrients in the water.

    One the nutrients are used up the algae will starve and die and your bloom will fade. It may take a season or two to settle down, but don't waste your money on a solar powered pump - for it to have any significant power, the solar collector would have to be very sizeable - I reckon the pond skaters will move more water!

    As the plants mature in the pond, they will use any nutrients that become available, leaving little for algae to feed on.

    You'll still likely get algae of all sorts from time to time, but it's all part of being natural, you just need to lend a guiding hand now and then

    good luck

    PS - I have an 8x12 ornamental fish pond with a waterfall and filter and 2x 8x6 wildlife ponds that have no moving water or filtration and get very little attention, let's say they look very 'natural' image but healthy

    Knowledge is knowing that a tomato is a fruit.
    Wisdom is not putting it in a fruit salad.
  • Fishy65Fishy65 Posts: 2,253

    Thank you for your very detailed reply Pete. I'm my own worst enemy in many respects. The pond is about a month old and I'm hoping the algae bloom will settle once cooler weather comes on. When I had a pond years ago it was concrete with crazy paving around the edge so no run-off of top soil.

    This pond has turf right to the edge and overhanging in places to get a natural look. Of course the downside is soil crumbling into the pond. What about some barley straw to kick start some friendly bacteria? One thing for sure is that the watercress I've put in is loving it image


  • Fishy65Fishy65 Posts: 2,253

    Mike - thank you for your input. I considered a solar powered pump for the fact it would kill two birds with one stone i.e use a natural energy source thus being 'green' and save our electric bill.

    At the same time I questioned the durability of such an item when compared to a standard mains run machine and couldn't help coming to the same conclusion as yourself. I think the best thing I can do is give the pond time,I'm trying to rush it along which doesn't work.

    The family are OK thank you, hope you are too image

  • Pete.8Pete.8 Billericay, EssexPosts: 6,280

    Hi Fishy - my 2 wildlife ponds also have turf which touches the water surface. Soil did crumble into the pond initially, but soon cleared.

    Barley straw is added around the end of feb/early march at the rate of 50g per sq. metre of surface area. Sometimes it does work other time not so sure...

    I also grow watercress in the waterfall of the main pond

    Knowledge is knowing that a tomato is a fruit.
    Wisdom is not putting it in a fruit salad.
  • DovefromaboveDovefromabove Central Norfolk UKPosts: 66,180

    Your pond sounds much like ours - we have turfed edges.  We used Blagdon Barley Straw Extract a couple of times in ours (you can get it from the GC or Amazon) and it's sorted the problem. 

    It's more practical than using straw itself in a small pond and certainly hasn't harmed the wildlife - in our pond (dug this year) we've had frogs, toads, newts and a grass snake, not to mention damsel flies and dragon flies and many more insects.


    “I am not lost, for I know where I am. But however, where I am may be lost.” Winnie the Pooh

  • LynLyn DevonPosts: 16,828

    Fishy, you sound desparate now, so time for me to get those plants sorted out for you, put lots of nutrient eaters in, you can always turf them out next year and chuck if they grow too much ,

    I would advise that if you are not using aquatic soil you put the marginals in ordinary flower pots with chippings on the top, that will stop the excess soil leaking into the pond, save your perforated baskets for a while, or you will be in a circle of plants, nutrients plants etc.

    We shall dayimage

    Gardening on the wild, windy west side of Dartmoor. 

  • FairygirlFairygirl west central ScotlandPosts: 35,520

    Fishy - Pete's right - it just takes time. image

    It's a place where beautiful isn't enough of a word....

  • Fishy65Fishy65 Posts: 2,253

    Thanks folks for all your lovely comments. Yes Lyn, I'm now at my wits end image Instead of a pond and a bog garden,I now have two bog gardens image The frog however seems quite happy image

    Talking of frogs, I was speaking to the neighbour today and she said she'd had four frogs in her fish pond. And that's a raised pond too,about three feet off the ground. It just shows how nimble they are image

  • LynLyn DevonPosts: 16,828

    Alex says that sometimes it could be caused by a dead one in there. It doesnt matter in a big  pond but in a little one, can caurse probs.

    Plants sent today, finally, bet you thought I was having you on?

    My daughter didnt have a pond but found them mating in her outside loo, she got them and and spawn out and made a pond in the kiddies sand pit, she is now overrun with frogs. Seems they are not fussy.

    Gardening on the wild, windy west side of Dartmoor. 

  • Fishy65Fishy65 Posts: 2,253

    Crikey Lyn that's a first,frogs breeding in a toilet image You really are a trooper and no I never thought for a moment you were pulling my leg. Well...maybe once or twice image

    Alex is right about pond size,the same principle applies to aquariums. Generally,the smaller the aquarium the more water changes you have to do. A bigger volume of water allows for more leeway. I don't 'think' there's anything dead in there,maybe the odd sheep but that's all....

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