Discover the many advantages of decorative rainwater butts

Decorative rainwater butts with an integrated planter or aesthetic elegance of ceramics make harvesting rain water far more appealing. These rainwater butts, which are available in a range of shapes and sizes serve a multi-functional role in any size garden. Those stocked by Liners Online can store between 185 to 245 litres of rainwater thereby saving on the use of mains water supplies for outdoor use.

Cascata decorative rainwater buttsRainwater harvesting is the technique used to collect, store and use rainwater for garden irrigation purposes or other uses where purified water isn’t essential.  Rainwater butts including the decorative designs are easy to attach to a down-water pipe to collect the rain off the roofs of homes or any other man-made hard surface.

Many will argue that there is enough rainfall in the UK not to warrant the investment of a rainwater butt. Perhaps pointing out all the advantages will help understand and appreciate the many positive environmental aspects of investing in a rain butt. Rainwater can be used for many outdoor and indoor purposes such as to wash cars, clean patio furniture, wash windows as well as to water established plants during the dryer periods – particularly from July to September when ground water has become depleted.

The advantages of installing a rainwater butt

  • Reduces the demand on mains water supplies
  • Provides sufficient water for your garden during the drier months of summer when needs exceed rainfall amounts
  • Rain water is preferred by plants (avoid using on seedlings) as it has a balanced pH value free of limescale and chemicals
  • Reduces domestic water bills
  • Promotes water conservation. Over extraction of ground water is damaging our wetlands
  • Reduces the risk of flooding
  • More environmentally friendly because no energy was used to pump water to where it is required.

Rainwater butts are available in many shapes and sizes to suit a range of budgets and garden types. Decorative butts  are available with an integral planter or bird bath for a multifunctional use. They combine the aesthetic elegance of ceramics with the longevity of modern plastics. For more information about our range of rainwater butts, please visit the Garden Accessories category on Liners Line website.

How to take care of goldfish in garden ponds

Do the goldfish in your pond look like they need reviving? Belly up and motionless could be a sign that they are over fed or are in a pond with poor water quality. Goldfish swimming in a healthy garden pondIt could also be the result of a lack of oxygen – using a solar powered bubbler will help to increase the oxygen levels of the water during winter months when a pond has frozen over.

Water quality is very important to health of goldfish who become increasingly stressed in poor conditions. There are a number of factors that can affect pond health such as local climate, size of pond, number of fish stocked, number of aquatic plants and the type of filtration system installed.

Goldfish are cold water fish and so do best in ponds that are in partial to full shade (geography dependent but best to avoid goldfish pond water getting too warm). Types of goldfish that are hardy and known to thrive in a garden pond are the Cornet, Ryakin and Shubunkin. They can survive all but the coldest winters when ponds freeze over. Goldfish require less maintenance than Koi and do less damage to pond plants nibbling on them only.

Healthy pond water conditions for goldfish

  • avoid spraying insecticides or pesticides on to flower beds that are close to your pond and put measures in place to prevent rainwater run-off (unless your garden and pond are on flat ground!). Use natural methods of pest control to reduce chemicals entering your pond and affecting the water quality.
  • test the pH of your pond water fairly regularly. Goldfish thrive in water which has a pH of around 7 to 7.4. High ammonia and nitrate levels are an indication that there are too many fish in your pond or the filter system isn’t coping. The role of a filter system is to clean the pond water and keep it free of bad bacteria.
  • carry out a partial water change weekly.  This helps to remove pollutants from the water. The advice on how much water is exchanged varies amongst pond experts. Start by doing a 10% change and monitor the water quality between changes. If 10% is not enough to remove pollutants then increase the volume. No more than 50% should be changed to avoid stressing the natural ecosystem and fish. Use a pump, pond vacuum or hose to remove water from your pond. Replace with harvested rainwater or dechlorinated tap water.
  • a garden pond is a closed water system where water leaves only via evaporation leaving behind pollutants. Ponds need to be installed with a good filtration system to remove fish waste – which if not removed release ammonia into the water. Bacteria in the water converts ammonia into nitrates which is then processed by plants and algae.
  • reduce levels of algae by growing aquatic plants which cover 50 to 70% of the water surface. Plants will also offer a protective habitat to fish. They also absorb nutrients in the water reducing algae growth
  • remove organic mater from your pond water before it sinks to the bottom and starts to decompose – and becoming a food source for the growth of algae.
  • add one fish per 30 gallons of water.
  • the greater the surface area of a pond the greater the amount of oxygen so always build a pond as big as your garden space will allow.

Goldfish can thrive outdoors for many years in well nurtured and maintained garden ponds. A raised, vertically sided pond lined with a rubber Epalyn or Butyl pond liner is more of a deterrent to pond predators than a pond on ground level. There are, however pond guards and protective aids available for all pond types and shapes to discourage predators visiting and reducing your goldfish numbers.

Goldfish are friendly and add so much character to a garden pond. They are hardy provided you follow the advice shared in this article. If you can add anymore advice, we would love to hear from you.

How to stop predators making a meal of your fish pond

Fish ponds are just as likely to attract wildlife as a natural pond. But, not all visitors to a fish pond are welcome. There are some visitors who are more obvious and easy to deter while others are so agile and sneaky their visits often go unnoticed with dire consequences.

Fish pond predators UK

  • Mink – the American Mink is often mistaken for an Otto but are much smaller with fluffier tails and pointed snouts. They are not native to the UK and were bought across from America for the fur-farming industry in the 1920’s. The mink population reached peak numbers in the 1950’s with a record number of farms totalling around 400. By the end of 1967, wild mink were reported in more than 50% of our counties as a result of them escaping or being set free by protestors to the fur industry.As yet there is no strategy for managing the UK wild mink populations. This sweet looking creature is an indiscriminate killer of fish, birds and small mammals. They have no natural predators so the population numbers are thriving which is not good news for fish pond keepers that are neighbours to the country-side.  Mink are nocturnal and move very swiftly so it is difficult to locate their presence. They are also good little swimmers and are strong enough to take fish bigger than they are. The little rascals will get under pond netting and are undeterred by steep edged pond designs. Mink a predator on koi and carp in fish ponds
  • Herons – they are wading birds and mostly associated with wetlands. They prey on fish, frogs and invertebrates obtaining their food by wading through wetlands and visiting garden ponds. Herons are a common siting at the side of water where they stand on one leg with their heads hunched into the top of their wings. They are frequently seen along the side of the canals too (in fact where there are fisherman there are likely to be herons!). They pounce onto the unsuspecting victim in shallow water with their dagger like beaks. Once they have found a garden pond with a rich food source they are very persistent.
  • Foxes, crows and cats are less likely to steal fish but if it is an easy meal – the threat of these animals is real.

How to stop a predator invasion

Fish pond design and size can make a big impact on keeping predators away, although it is not a full proof deterrent. Building a raised pond with vertical sides makes it more difficult for predators to ‘fish’ around for prey. Adding floating plants to your fish pond offers a place to hide when your fish feel threatened by unwanted visitors. A shallow pond with sloping sides makes it very easy for predators to gain access and to exit.

A pond guard or netting will keep foxes, cats, herons and crows from treating your pond like a sushi take-away. This will not deter the otto or mink, though as they can get under the netting.

If you reside near a lake or canal you are likely to see heron visiting your garden in the hope of grabbing easy pickings. Many fish pond owners invest in a heron decoy to put on the edge of their pond but this alone doesn’t always have a 100% success rate.

For the otto and American mink visitors, a 0.3 meter mesh fence or electric fence with absolutely no gaps is probably your best solution for ponds built at ground level. You only need to leave it up for about a month and they will soon learn that your pond is not open to visitors – ever!

A fifth deterrent worth trying at times when you feel your pond is under threat is to supply an alternative food source to draw predators away from your fish pond.

There is nothing more disheartening than our pond inhabitants losing their precious lives to the beaks, jaws and claws of hungry predators. There are certain loses that are at the mercy of nature and difficult to control such as that of dwindling tadpole numbers. However, with larger predators there is a greater chance of being able to put defences in place to deter them. The Grey Heron is probably our biggest threat to any pond owner, preying on fish and frogs. Predators to fish ponds tend to pray on easy pickings so if fish have a place to hide, they are less likely to invite attention. If the escape route out of a pond is a challenge it too would be a disincentive to predators. Be on the look out and keep your precious fish safe!

A box-welded pond liner for vertically sided fish ponds makes it more difficult for claws and beaks to come in contact and risk puncturing the liner – predators are also less likely to bother trying to prey on fish in a pond when access and exit are more of a challenge. Building a pergola over a raised pond is an added deterrent for birds whose flight will be obstructed by the pillars of the pergola.

Keeping a fish pond safe from predators is likely to require a bit of effort. However, if you do succeed in making it difficult for the predators to feast on your fish, frogs or tadpoles – the chances are they will leave to look for easier pickings elsewhere.

 

Discover garden ponds and their environmental value

Owning a garden pond offers many environmental benefits including the great value it offers to wildlife and enhancing the property we live. The intensively farmed country-side, use of agricultural sprays, draining of wetland habitats and expansion of towns and cities has resulted in the decline of many wild life species including the common frog – despite it’s name it is actually in rapid decline. All this has a devastating environment impact.

Benefits of building a garden pond

  • Provides a breeding habitat for many species Frog and frog spawn in garden pond
  • Offers a temporary home for amphibians and reptiles – frogs and newts find their way to water sources – newts favour ponds without fish.
  • Holds a diversity of species
  • Ecosystems are linked by water
  • They recirculate water unlike lawns and flowerbeds which require constant watering during warm, dry weather
  • The sludge collected by a ponds filter is rich in nutrients from fish faeces, uneaten fish food and decaying plant matter. It makes a natural fertilizer that can be dug into flower beds.

Ponds offer wildlife a home, breeding habitat and a source of food. However, it is not just the water feature, it is also about the landscape surrounding a garden pond that is of great value.  For example, newts leave hibernation between February and March, returning to ponds for breeding with pond plants providing egg-laying locations. They also need an undisturbed habitat around the pond, providing refuge and good feeding sites. By not paving all of the green space in your garden and being less of a perfectionist when it comes to tidying flower beds, are valued by wildlife. Piles of dried leaves are home to frogs, newts and many other small creatures. Gardens and ponds work in harmony to help the environment – plants, shrubs and trees haver air purifying properties reducing the toxic effect of air pollution.

A garden pond offers important benefits to us too. Ponds offer a sanctuary – a place to go to relax and shut yourself off from the rest of the world – listening to the tranquil sound of water while watching nature at it’s happiest!

Garden ponds with or without the addition of a small fountain are likely to also add to the value of your property. According to The Telegraph May 2016 – “Running water can help mask background noise in areas near busy roads or schools. Small fountains or water features can help create a more peaceful environment – making it more attractive to potential buyers.”

P.S. Butyl and Epalyn pond liners are environmentally friendly products and don’t leach toxic chemicals into the water.

 

Why quality matters when buying a pond liner

Pond liners serve two main functions in pond construction. A pond liner is impermeable and maintains water retention – stops ground seepage.  They also serve to keep sediment and other debris out of your pond. Today shops and online stores are filled with a choice for every conceivable item and pond liners are no exception. But, knowing what qualities in an item to look for to give the best return on investment can make the experience less daunting. Continue reading

Tips on essential Spring garden pond maintenance

The daffodils are awakening and filling our gardens and countryside with splashes of yellow. A most welcoming sign that Spring is soon to be with us – the days are getting longer and there is more time get things done outdoors. Daffodils in flower welcoming the coming of Spring

All garden ponds require regular maintenance to keep them looking good. Deep ponds do tend to remain cleaner than shallow ones. Algae, particularly blanket weed tends to occur in newer ponds where a balanced ecosystem has not yet been established or in one which is overstocked with fish. The best way to deal with algae is to remove it on a regular basis using a plastic rake to remove the filamentous weed. Barley straw is an environmentally friendly treatment for blanket weed. Submerge mesh bags of barley straw just below the water’s surface in early spring (replace the straw when it turns black). Chemicals released when the straw decomposes inhibits the growth of algae.

Garden pond spring checklist

While we still have a few weeks to go before it is officially Spring, it’s important to schedule in a pond care checklist for when the days do start to get warmer. Spring will also become evident when fish start swimming around more energetically and plants are poking green shoots above the water. Koi fish should not be fed until the pond water temperature is stable at around 55 degrees F (12 degrees C).

Things to do in spring:

  • Give your pond filter a good cleaning. If you have a bio-filter, give it a boost of a bacteria/enzyme product to ensure a good bacteria colony starts to grow in the bio-filter.
  • Clean your pond pump and check all hoses for leaks or cracks.
  • If you have a net covering your pond, make sure it is still intact, if not, replace it.
  • Remove leaves or other debris in your pond – as the water warms up, any debris left in your pond will start to decompose and affect the health of fish.
  • Check your fish for any illnesses or wounds.
  • Divide and repot pond plants. Avoid re-potting with soil full of organic matter. Most water plants grow well in sand and don’t require fertilizer. Water lilies are, however, an exception and do require fertilizer for a healthy growth. Water plants get their nutrients from fish waste. If you have extra plants after you have divided them, you may want to consider growing them in low, damp spaces in your garden.
  • For fish ponds, make sure that up to half of the surface of your pond is covered with floating plants as it gives the fish a place to hide from predators and keeps them cool in the heat of the summer. It also keeps the sun from encouraging algae growth.
  • If your pond is lined with a pond liner check that the material you have used for the edging is still in place, sufficiently covering the pond line to prevent any possible damage from claws or the UV rays – rubber pond liners are UV stable and will withstand long periods of UV exposure – but, a bare edging exposing a pond liner can detract from the beauty of the pond.

Spring marks a time when ponds come back to life after the winter lull. Frogs will start visiting garden ponds to spawn. Gold fish start to awaken and the males start to feel frisky chasing the females around the pond. Insects start to hatch. Herons will be getting ready to nest and on the look out for an easy meal of goldfish or koi – look out for them in the early hours of the morning. Spring is also a time for growth, so look out for your aquatic plants and make sure they don’t start occupying all of your pond.

HAPPY SPRING CLEANING – when the good weather arrives!!

Tailored pond liner project photographs

Liners Online supplied the tailored pond liner for this complex pond design. The pond is sited on a residential garden in Scotland against a majestic mountainous backdrop. The customer requested a tailored-to-fit pond liner and protective underlay to fit to the exact dimensions of the pond build.

We are passionate about the pond liners we supply and have years of experience in the business including on-site installation and fabrication.

A tailored pond liner is also referred to as a box-welded pond liner. This type of liner is cut and fabricated to the exact design drawings submitted. They are then fitted to vertically sided earth, brick or concrete formal shaped ponds (rectangles, circles or “L“ shapes are most common). A design that includes planting shelves, sloping bases, uneven depths or a haunched base to fit a bottom drain, can all be accommodated.

The advantage to installing a tailored pond liner is that they eliminate folds and unsightly creases. Folds to the pond liner have the potential for harbouring debris which is not ideal for koi keeping. Accumulated debris can lead to the growth of unwanted pathogens and as a result, adversely affect the health of the water.

When you order a tailored pond liner, as was the case with this customer, it will be prefabricated to your bespoke requirements using either 1.0mm EPDM rubber or 0.75mm Butyl pond liner membrane. Your pond liner will come with a 25 year guarantee provided it is installed above a protective underlay. All tailored liners are fabricated to fit the exact shape of your pond with an overlay lip over which flagstone or other edging material can be placed to secure the liner in place.

To assist us in providing a tailored pond liner, we will need a drawing showing all the dimensions. Our service offers a bespoke pond liner cut and welded to the exact shape of your pond for a snug fit.

How to go from inspiration to design to building your pond

The success of a pond build is derived from passion and inspiration. If you are thinking of building a water garden, do your research first by looking through landscape and garden related magazines or visiting public gardens – inspiration is usually drawn from something that has grabbed our attention resulting in a nagging urge to create a similar effect in our own garden. Being inspired is all the motivation you need to get started!  From inspiration you then need to be able to visualise what it will look like in your own garden. I always suggest standing at a window on the second or third floor of your house and spend time looking out over your garden picturing exactly where you plan to site your pond, the shape and how it will blend in with the surrounding landscape.

Inspired? Now start planning your pond

  • first decide what type of pond you want – either formal, natural or bog garden.
  • closely observe the site you wish to build your pond and take note whether the site gets enough sunlight, whether your garden is the right size and shape for what you have in mind and what you can afford.

A formal pond can be created from a box-welded pond liner in conjunction with brick, wood, concrete and stone. It can be raised or built into the ground.

Natural pond created using flat sheet pond liner secured in place using paving or crick edging material.  No matter which pond liner you decide to install, the secrete to a successful pond build is to make sure that the edges are concealed either under ground or by using edging materials such as brick or paving stone. To guarantee the life of your pond liner it must be installed above a protective underlay. If your inspiration is derived from a passion to stock fish and aquatic plants – go for a natural type pond. Build a pond as big as your garden will allow with shelves built into the sides and a sloping edge. Pond must be positioned so it gets more sun than shade.

Once you are quite clear what you want you can start putting pen to paper and do a scaled plan listing all the materials and equipment needed too. Make sure there are no underground cables or pipes on the site you intend building on.

As part of the visualisation process, take your scaled drawing and map it out in your garden using spray paint, sand or rope. Go back upstairs and look out over your garden again. Does your design work? Make any adjustments until your design matches what you had visualised. Also ask yourself if your design idea is practical for your garden size, does it work in harmony with the rest of your garden – is your plan realistic? Established garden pond to inspire your own pond build plans.

Your plan also needs to include ways in which the water in your pond will be filtered and oxygenated. If you don’t want to keep any aquatic plants or just a few but want crystal clear water in your pond, you will need to install a filtration system to break down waste products and debris. Ponds need oxygen as part of maintaining a healthy ecosystem. It is important for aquatic life to thrive keeping a pond from going green and fish from dying. Oxygenating plants absorb carbon dioxide and give off oxygen therefore a great idea to stock these in a pond. An alternative is to install a fountain because moving water increases oxygen levels and therefore is healthier than stagnant water.

Choosing aquatic pond plants

  • aquatic plants are chosen not only for their inherent qualities but also for their effect adding height, breadth and colour to the overall scene. They oxygenate the water, provide food and offer protection to pond creatures.
  • read labels and try to imagine the effect it will have to your pond once it has grown to maturity.
  • consider style of pond matched to visual impact of plant.

Inclusion of fish

When introducing fish you need to consider the mature size of the fish and the habitat you will be introducing them to. A water garden that is too small or fish that are too big will lead to problems.

The depth, average water temperature, size, moving versus still water, amount of daily sunshine versus shade – are all important factors to take into account when deciding on number and type of fish. Introduce just a few native fish to start with and see how they cope.

Pond build that will transform your garden

A pond should be the focal point of your garden and blend with the surrounding landscape. A pond build can be one that is raised off the ground constructed using concrete blocks, bricks, stone or railways sleepers. Or, a sunken pond build which will require excavating out the ground to a desired width, length and depth – with or without planting shelves. Use the removed soil to make flowerbeds or the foundation of a waterfall to flow into your pond.

If you have dreams about building your own water garden, this article provides a guide on the stages necessary to get you started. Now is a great time to make a start on your project – the ground is damp and there is just enough time to get the job done by the start of Spring.

 

Box-welded pond liners customised to customer requirements

Box-welded pond liners are better suited to some pond builds especially regular shaped ones where a 2-dimensional pond liner installation will result in unsightly folds and creases. A box-welded pond liner is cut and fabricated or hot bond welded to the dimensions and design submitted by the customer. An overlay lip is included upon which flagstone or other edging material can be placed to secure the box-welded liner in place. The pond liner is then slipped into the pond dug-out – and above a sheet of Geotextile protective underlay liner. The result is a perfect fit to a formal pond.

Vertically sided ponds create a splendid feature in any garden and are often home to Koi-fish. Liners Online have the expertise to cater for ponds from simple designs to more complicated ones – including those with planting shelves, sloping bases, uneven depths or a haunched base to fit a bottom drain. For very sophisticated designs, the box-welded pond liner can be welded onsite.

Box-welded pond liners are also referred to as custom-made, tailored-to-fit, bespoke or made-to-measure liners. Butyl and Epalyn (EPDM) pond liners are a synthetic rubber material from which a box-welded liner is made. To assist in providing a box welded pond liner, a drawing is needed showing all the dimensions.

Box-welded pond liners fabricated from rubber pond liners

  • gives a relaxed fit with no stretching
  • UV resistant
  • made-to-measure from simple shapes to intricate designs can all be catered for
  • gives a neat and professional finish (eliminates creases and folds which have the potential for harbouring debris)
  • tear resistant
  • certified non-toxic to fish or other aquatic life
  • comes with a 25 year guarantee provided it is installed above a protective underlay

Box-welded pond liners made for customers

Here are just some of the formal pond designs for which we have fabricated and supplied the pond liner:

Box-welded pond liner fabricated for this customers pond Rectangular pond with vertical sides fitted with a box-welded pond linerFitting a box-welded pond linerFormal garden pond with box-welded pond liner installed to give a neat crease-free finish

Raised pond lined with box-welded pond liners

Box-welded pond liners not limited by pond design

This entry was posted on February 8, 2017, in Pond Liners.

Pond liner installed to a complex pond design

Sharing this review kindly sent to us by one of our customers is testimony that we don’t just sell a pond liner or product, but also our knowledge and expertise to help and advise. We will work with you on your pond design to tailor a pond liner to fit to exact dimensions. Whether you want a flat sheet pond liner or one that is welded to a formal ornamental pond design to fit ‘like-a-glove’ without any folds or creases.

A review sent to us by a customer to whom we supplied the Geotextile underlay and 1.00mm Epalyn pond liner for his unusually shaped garden pond – “I explained my proposal for an odd-shaped liner, and the team at Liners Online came back with several options, which we refined to to a cost-effective, but still complicated shape. The order was delivered only 3 days later, as promised, and is obviously an excellent product with which I am totally satisfied. I would recommend this company to any pond-builder.”Chris Yarrow of East Sussex.

For this pond liner order we took a sheet of Epalyn rubber and cut it to the required lengths before vulcanising them together to form the finished pond liner. The flexibility of a pond liner allows the freedom to design a pond that suits individual requirements without any restrictions imposed. Just dig your pond the shape you require and contact us and we will advise you on the best size and material for your pond. All rubber pond liners come with a long-term warranty for added peace of mind.

Here are photographs Chris shared showing the underlay installed and secured in place using old bricks while they got to work to lay down the pond liner.  The second photograph shows it filling with water. We have been promised a few photos of the end result once completed in a few weeks time once the edging has been laid to secure the liners in place. Work in progress and we can’t wait to see the end result!

Laying the pond liner and the early stage of filing the pondLaying the pond liner and the early stage of filing the pond

This entry was posted on February 1, 2017, in Garden ponds.

Why a compost bin is a good investment for gardens

Compost bins are a neat and easy way to turn waste into a nutrient rich fertilizer. Composting is a valuable process by which life is given back to the soil. Compost is decomposed material made from waste that other wise would have gone to landfill. Green leaves, fruit and vegetable scraps, egg shells, fresh grass clippings, tea bags, used coffee granules, cardboard egg boxes and twigs can all be thrown into a compost bin.

Advantages of investing in a compost bin

  • saves money on buying chemical-based fertilizers
  • compost will enhance the quality and texture of soil by improving its ability to hold moisture and nutrients
  • compost produced and fed into the ground will improve the texture of clay and sandy soil by making them more loamy and increasing the ability to hold water for longer
  • compost improves soil aeration and drainage
  • dig compost into flower beds to control weeds
  • reduces landfill – garden and kitchen waste sent to landfill and start to decompose in the absence of oxygen. The result is methane gas released into the environment – a by-product that contributes to global warming

The composting process can be speeded up by regularly aerating it. This is done by turning and mixing the content of the compost bin once a week. When it looks, feels and smells like rich dark soil then you know it is ready to dig into the ground.

A tumbling compost bin will make home composting easier – you won’t need to get out your gardening fork to mix and turn the compost. With all the benefits as listed above, why not invest in a product that will help simplify the home composting process?

Benefits of a tumbling compost bin 

When mTumbling compost binaking your own compost, it is important to remember that aeration is vital for the organic matter to break down properly. So, when comparing a standing compost bin to a tumbling compost bin, there are a few factors you need to consider. Firstly, a tumbling compost bin does exactly what its names states – it tumbles – and the rotating function is what ensures that the organic waste gets the aeration it needs to decompose and produce high quality compost. If you use a standing bin, you would need to aerate the compost yourself with a shovel or garden pick. This process is not as effective and it means more effort for you and may ultimately cause damage to the bin itself as well. The second point to consider is the strength and durability of the bin. A tumbling compost bin is made of stronger heavy-duty materials as it is designed to support the full load of the compost.

Finally, we need to consider convenience. Working with compost can be a messy and smelly job. A tumbling compost bin empties from the top and is mobile, meaning you simply have to wheel it over to where the compost is needed and tip it over to access the contents. Standing bins, which empty from the bottom, are immobile and therefore require a lot more hands-on participation.

By recycling your organic waste as compost at home, you are making a significant impact on the environment – and you will enjoy the benefits in your own garden by nourishing your plants with all the essential nutrients and minerals they need. At Liners Online, we are committed to environmentally friendly practises and sell a range of garden related products – from pond liners to solar lighting and tumbling compost bins . So contact us today and get composting!

Garden ponds and the value of submerged aquatic plants

A survey conducted in 2015 found that an average of one in ten homes across Britain have a garden pond or water feature. This statistic is encouraging although still doesn’t quite match the lose to wildlife of natural ponds and lakes. No matter what the goal is for a pond owner, whether for fish or to encourage wildlife, they all provide a habitat for amphibians, water insects, birds and small creatures. Ponds require less maintenance than that of a garden provided there is a good balance of aquatic plants, often referred to as natures best filtration system.

Under water photo of submerged aquatic plants

Garden ponds are defined as shallow bodies of water of up to 2 meters deep. The sun is able to penetrate such depths casting it’s rays to the bottom of the pond creating the perfect environment for submerged plants to grow. Floating plants such as the commonly know water lilly, grow on the surface and have no root system. They are beneficial in providing shade and shelter to pond inhabitants, but if not managed can grow across the surface blanking out the sun and preventing photosynthesis. Covering no more than 60% of the surface will prevent algae growth while providing sufficient shelter to pond creatures.

There are four types of aquatic plants, namely floaters, submerged, marginals and oxygenators. All offer benefits to maintaining a healthy pond ecosystem so it is good to add a few of each type – how many is dependent on pond size, depth and goal of pond. A healthy pond ecology is about balancing the life in your pond with the environment within – a shallow pond with little movement of water fully exposed to the sun and rich in nutrients is the perfect environment for algae growth. Not quite what a pond owner wants to see happen!  This is important to note when setting your goals for a garden pond.

Aquatic plants offer numerous benefits to garden ponds. They are important to the life of fish and wildlife because they provide cover from danger, nesting areas and food. The presence of aquatic plants really depends on the goal for a pond with wildlife ponds likely to have a greater variety of plants versus a pond housing fish. Submerged plants are important to both types of ponds. They provide protection to small fish, release oxygen into the water and absorb and provide long-term storage of nutrients (that might otherwise be used to increase the levels of algae in a pond). Ponds with submerged plants have fewer problems with algae. However, grown in abundance and they could cause problems for fish pond owners.

The advantages to aquatic plants in garden ponds

  • a decrease in water clarity can often be solved by adding submerged or oxygenating plants
  • known as  natures natural filtration system
  • provide food and shelter to aquatic life
  • aesthetically pleasing to a pond giving it character and dimension

Before rushing out to buy aquatic plants for your pond, here are three important things to note: some plants thrive in moving water while others prefer still waters, buy from a reputable aquatic trader who is more likely to sell disease free plants and buy native plants.

Can you feel the days getting longer – soon we will be outdoors soaking-up the sun while enjoying the tranquil beauty of our garden ponds!

 

 

This entry was posted on January 18, 2017, in Garden ponds.