1. Filtration System
Includes the use of both a biological and a mechanical filter.
A BioFalls® (biological filter) is a beautiful, natural looking waterfall that provides surface area for beneficial bacteria to colonize and remove excess nutrients from the water. Bacteria! Beneficial bacteria are GREAT for ponds! They break down debris and nutrients that could otherwise lead to poor water quality. A strong population of beneficial bacteria helps keep ponds clear and healthy.
A Skimmer (mechanical filter) will not only pre-filter the water and house the pump; it will also skim debris from the water’s surface to prevent the accumulation of debris
2. Rocks and Gravel
Rocks and gravel will not only protect pond liners from UV light degradation, but they will also provide even more surface area for beneficial bacteria to dissolve organic debris on the pond floor. Rocks also provide a place for your fish to feel at home.
3. Re-circulation System
This is the pump and the pipe system of the pond. The proper size pump and pipe diameter are extremely important for the appearance of a water feature. More importantly, an efficient circulation system will keep the water moving and provide the necessary oxygen levels for healthy fish and plants and prevent a build up of algae and mosquitos.
Fish are an integral part of any ecosystem. Unfortunately, fish are often seen as high maintenance. This couldn’t be further from the truth! Fish actually REDUCE pond maintenance because they feed on string algae and eat the “gunk” off the pond floor. They also make very enjoyable pets. You can even train your fish to eat of your hand.
5. Aquatic Plants
Plants not only look beautiful in a pond, but they are also natural filters. They provide color and depth to your pond while filtering on excess nutrients. This helps reduce algae build up, as well.
How Do All These Elements Work Together?
In order to have a successful water garden, you must understand the critical role of each part of your pond’s ecosystem.
The fish nibble on the plant life (and everything else), including the algae.
In turn, the fish produce waste that, along with other forms of natural debris, fall to the pond’s bottom.
Debris is broken down by the beneficial bacteria and the other microorganisms that live on the rocks and gravel all over the pond bottom.
Once broken down, these substances are absorbed as nutrition by the plants.
The plants grow and are once again nibbled on by the fish.
So, in a naturally balanced water garden, you have this never-ending aquatic circle of life where all parts complement the others, and play critical roles in the pond’s natural born harmony.
Having all these things in place makes all the difference in the health and success of your water garden. Use them and work with Mother Nature, not against her, for a chemical-free wonderland of water! The truth is that most people opt for the ecosystem way of water gardening because it’s easier and it just makes sense. A low-maintenance ecosystem pond provides you with more free time to enjoy friends and family … while gathered around your pond, of course!