Too much duckweed?

catherinet(5 IN)April 23, 2014

For some reason this spring, my one in-ground 300 gallon Rubbermaid pond is totally covered in duckweed. Is that a bad thing?
Thanks.

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Holly_ON(6a Ontario)

Here in the Toronto area, ponders pay a lot of money for that "fish treat"!

    Bookmark   April 23, 2014 at 5:38PM
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catherinet(5 IN)

I didn't know if the surface is totally covered with duckweed, if the lilies might have trouble growing?
I also have alot of pondweed, etc. in the water. I decided to leave it there because I think it might help with filtration. I'm not using my little waterfall anymore, because it would grow tons of algae on it and look awful...........but it sure did filter the water well! So I'm thinking if I leave this other stuff in there, it might continue to keep the water clearer. But I don't know if that's true. I guess this will be an experiment. I can always remove some of it.
I will miss that waterfall, but after awhile, it looks black and yukky...........even though it was doing good.

    Bookmark   April 24, 2014 at 9:40AM
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catherinet(5 IN)

I didn't get much feedback on my question.......so I'm asking it again.
Would my small pond that is totally covered in duckweed, be a problem for the waterlily?

    Bookmark   May 14, 2014 at 12:32PM
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waterbug_guy(Phoenix AZ (Melrose))

I basically agree with catherinet, especially the string algae being a great filter. But back to duckweed.

I assume waterlilies would still sprout and would have no trouble pushing the duckweed out of the way. But I'm not sure if less light would delay sprouting. I assume waterlilies sprout because of water temp because they sprout in green/muddy water. Could be some issues with pads unrolling if duckweed is packed tight. Duckweed can can so thick it piles on top of itself.

    Bookmark   May 14, 2014 at 5:25PM
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butterfly4u

Catherinet,
You should send some to me.
I will gladly relieve you of any excess duckweed you may have, at any time, I will even send you postage for it.
Seriously, fish love the stuff, I would keep it in a seperate container so my fish won't eat it all like they did last year.,

    Bookmark   May 14, 2014 at 11:01PM
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steiconi(12a-Big Island, HI)

When the floating plants get to be too much, I scoop a bunch out to leave a little space for light and air. The lilies do seem to grow better without so much competition; or maybe I can just see them better...

    Bookmark   May 15, 2014 at 2:35PM
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bulldinkie(pa)

You have too much ,I cant get any love that floating in pond.

    Bookmark   May 15, 2014 at 10:11PM
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heather_on

Do you have fish in your pond? Mine love duckweed and always eat their veggies. I have trouble keeping enough for them as they eat every last scrap. It is very expensive to buy here.

    Bookmark   May 17, 2014 at 12:04PM
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catherinet(5 IN)

No fish......just tadpoles and snakes. The tadpoles usually eat it, but this year they don't seem so hungry. I have scooped alot out, but it keeps growing back faster than I can keep up with it!

    Bookmark   May 17, 2014 at 10:43PM
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diggery(z8)

Hi catherinet. I 'thought' I remembered you didn't have fish but didn't trust my memory, lol. I dunno, duckweed is certainly not harmful and even beneficial but I do wonder about a thick covering blocking light to your lilies as well. My fish keep my duckweek under control - I have to grow it in a separate container it disappears so fast.

I don't recall you ever mentioning why you chose not to have fish. And I may well get slammed for what I'm about to say.(Note here, my fish are my pets, all have names and I am devastated when I lose one.) However....if I were in your situation, I'd consider tossing in a handful of rosy red minnows and let them do your work for you. They have a short life span, stay small and will survive on their own in your healthy plant environment. No supplemental feeding necessary and little chance of getting emotionally attached. There I've said it.

As to your little waterfall, if you miss it, start it back up. When it gets covered in algae and starts looking yukky, shut it down for a few minutes & pour H2O2 on it. Let it do it's thing then rinse with the hose jet spray. It'll look like new and won't harm your plants (or fish for that matter).

    Bookmark   May 18, 2014 at 12:34PM
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diggery(z8)

Hi catherinet. I 'thought' I remembered you didn't have fish but didn't trust my memory, lol. I dunno, duckweed is certainly not harmful and even beneficial but I do wonder about a thick covering blocking light to your lilies as well. My fish keep my duckweek under control - I have to grow it in a separate container it disappears so fast.

I don't recall you ever mentioning why you chose not to have fish. And I may well get slammed for what I'm about to say.(Note here, my fish are my pets, all have names and I am devastated when I lose one.) However....if I were in your situation, I'd consider tossing in a handful of rosy red minnows and let them do your work for you. They have a short life span, stay small and will survive on their own in your healthy plant environment. No supplemental feeding necessary and little chance of getting emotionally attached. There I've said it.

As to your little waterfall, if you miss it, start it back up. When it gets covered in algae and starts looking yukky, shut it down for a few minutes & pour H2O2 on it. Let it do it's thing then rinse with the hose jet spray. It'll look like new and won't harm your plants (or fish for that matter).

    Bookmark   May 18, 2014 at 12:40PM
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CookingSherry(7a)

Hello! I've had a small pond for years with duckweed and lilies. The lilies never have trouble sprouting through. I agree with previous comments about throwing in some fish! Our county extension office will deliver mosquito-eating fish for free, btw.

    Bookmark   May 18, 2014 at 1:40PM
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catherinet(5 IN)

Thanks Diggery and CookingSherry!

I live out in the country and didn't want to fight with coons and herons, etc. (over fish)........but getting some minnows or mosquito fish sound like a good idea. But.....will the water snakes eat them? Would I find those minnows at a pet store?
Thanks!

    Bookmark   May 18, 2014 at 4:52PM
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lucille(Houston)

Not making any judgments but some states prohibit duckweed.

    Bookmark   May 18, 2014 at 4:57PM
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catherinet(5 IN)

Really? I didn't know that. I don't buy water hyacinth or lettuce anymore because of that. Didn't know it was a big problem.
I haven't bought it for years. It just keeps coming back every spring. I can see its potential for problems in the right environment though............. But so many things are.
Our 35 acres has been taken over with various invasives. Seems like things from Asia love to take over our native stuff around here.

    Bookmark   May 18, 2014 at 7:39PM
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