Gardening and Ponding together
My boyfriend's 19-year-old son is really getting into gardening and composting. I once had a beautiful koi pond that I miss greatly (was huge). I have a small 3.5 gallon aquarium, and was begging to get a really big aquarium. He mentioned having a pond, and being able to use the algae and debris with his composting and gardening.
I have ordered a 300 gallon rubbermaid stock tank. I want to have some goldfish or other fish, haven't decided yet, but want to give them a healthy environment. He wants to get algae and debris for his garden. How do we make these work together? I'm sure just using the pond water would be good fertilizer for his garden, but if I filter it to keep it clean for fish, then there wouldn't be much algae, right? I recall putting blue dye in the big koi pond to cut back on the algae, so I suppose filtration doesn't stop it.
Or can I just keep lots of water plants in it, and let him scrape off algae for his purposes, and keep it as simple as that (kiss method). Would like to have a small fountain, but wouldn't want it to get clogged. Will that work without filtration? I believe it will get plenty of sun.
Oh, he also wonders if he needs to build a wooden stand to sit it on so that the weight of the water doesn't make it unstable on the soil, if that makes sense. It would be on fairly flat soil, but he thinks it might settle under the weight in some areas or something like that.
What happens when it rains and overflows, it would be next to the fence by the neighbor's yard, wouldn't want it flowing over into their yard. The back of the yard slopes downward, and he could run some type of drain pipe, but there is a nature path right behind the yard...
My ex husband designed and built a very complex koi garden that I had before, using a swimming pool filter, so a container pond like this is completely different, and new to me.
In the future, I would love to get a second smaller stock tank to use as a biofilter, and let him grow vegies in it, which suits both our needs perfectly. Right now though, he has a very large vegie garden he is tilling and preparing. I don't want to spend the money all at once, so the stock pond, plants, fish, and fountain are all I want to get to start with. Just have to find out about filtration, and still give him algae and debris.
He plans to build some type of wooden structure around it to make it look a bit nicer, and I want to put potted plants around it, love irises.
Will the water plants be enough shade (gets over 100 degrees F in July-August). I read you can just put a piece of plywood over part of it for shade if necessary.
My koi did fine in the winter, only froze the top of the water slightly one time, and I kept the ice off most of the top so they had plenty of air, and I know not to feed them in the cold weather. We don't get that much really cold weather here. This last winter was worse than normal though.