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HELP i have a question about winter

Gardening Reference » Gardening in 2006
by kyangel on September 04, 2006 05:47 AM
[wavey] hello to all again from ky. hope everyone is doing great and enjoying their water gardens. this is our first pond and we have heard so many different things to do with our pond during winter weather, [gabby] from get a heater, put the fish indoors in tank, let it freeze over, to so many other things to do. what is the best thing for us to do. we have 5 pretty good size koi and about 16 shubunkins and 2 algae eaters tht are huge and 4 trapdoor snails. we hate for cold weather to hit but we know it is not far off. what do you suggest is the best thing to do for the pond. my hubby thinks the heater is best. also wht is best to do with our plants. one person suggested putting them in a tank indoors also. he said he always takes his in during winter and he has beautiful huge plants, he puts them in a rubbermaid tote indoors near a window for 3 coldest months. seems like a lot to do [dunno] please help if you can. i live in ky, near fort knox, and the winters have been really mild the last few years but they are saying this year is going to be a bad, cold winter for us. [thinker] any ideas?? thanks and have a great day [wavey]
by buzylady on September 04, 2006 06:57 AM
You must have a really large pond for all those fish. How big of a heater would that take? Mine is pretty small. The first yr. I brought the fish in the basement put in a kids pool (with a drain hole in the bottom to get rid of the water in the spring).They were shubumkin or fantail don't remember. They did ok. The basement is not heated but wont freeze. The fish didn't eat or barely move all winter. That was the yr. they mated early. The next yr. I left them in the pond. The water froze but not clear through. The fish did ok then too. They didn't mate that yr.
So I'd guess that you could do either one. Just remember if you leave them in and don't have a heater don't break the ice open that forms on top. I have read that dead leaves and plants left in the bottom can do bad things to the water. But I noticed that the frogs and fish hide in the leaves on the bottom.
I would not worry about the snails and algea eaters they probably wont make it through the winter. Course I'm just a beginner too. And things work /or don't work when you least expect them to.

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by kyangel on September 05, 2006 11:34 AM
our pond is 8'x6' and about 3' or so deep. it is deeper in some areas and shallow in others. i wish i had it sheltered, we are hoping to build a patio over it next year. tht way we can enclose it during winter. it would still be cold but not freezing.
by loz on September 06, 2006 05:48 AM
Do you know how many gallons it is? That's sounds like an awful lot of fish for your koi needs 250-500 gallons a piece.

You can float a ball or empty milk jugs in the pond so it doesn't freeze solid I've read. Plus the fish sort of shut down in the winter and stay in the deepest part of the pond and I believe you aren't supposed to feed them at all in the winter.

I just bought a tank to bring my 5 fish inside for the winter, but yours probably wouldn't do good in a tank since koi need so much room per fish. I would've left mine outside but we need to deepen it for that.
by kyangel on September 06, 2006 10:44 AM
our pond is about 300 gallons and our koi are not really big. our biggest is about 6" or so. the garden shop here has a pond about the size of ours and it is so full of fish and they have had it that way they said for several years now. they have one goldfish that is so huge. i am going to have to tke a pic of it next time i go there.they have a few koi but mostly gold fish. so far our fish are actually doing great and have doubled is size. i have a pond book from the laguna koi pond co. tht has the table in it that tells about the koi feeding as the temps drop and when to stop feeding. it has a lot of good ideas and stuff in it. we are wanting to make ours bigger and add a waterfall. but we are waiting to see, we may be moving and if so we will then be able to build a tri-level pond at the place we move to.
by SpringFever on September 06, 2006 08:55 PM
Rule of thumb is if you have at least a 36" pond you do not need to bring the fish in.. That is not going to freeze solid over th winter..I suggest the heater and make sure the water flow never freezes.. Even way up north where I live I do not have to bring the fish in...but I do cause the water flow freezes and I don't want to buy a heater!!
Plants I would bring in if they are not hardy in the cold... My water lily is hardy and I let her stay all winter frozen and all... Hope this helps a bit!! [wavey]

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by kyangel on September 07, 2006 11:30 AM
thasnks spring fever. hope we all have a mild winter.

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