I love my stream 2

chas045(7b)August 11, 2011

Last year I posted about the value of my stream, but I didn´┐Ż't know how to post pictures. I thought that I would repost it now that I have learned how to post pics and I will include a couple from last year.

I love my stream.

I'm not sure exactly what I have learned from the last two years of ponding except that my 24 foot stream has been wonderfully beneficial to my pond & stream. However, I thought that my observations might be of interest. I have mostly been lurking on this site. I'm in zone 7a in North Carolina with winters down to 15 and summers to 100. I have a 2400gph pump in a roughly 5x10x2.5 at top, 4x9x2 pond (700gal?) with a mini-me (20gal skippy with media and supplies originally from skippystuff) that receives approx. 25% of the flow.

My pond water has almost always been clear except that both the pond and stream have often had a heavy load of string algae. In my second year I added 3 goldfish mainly to see movement deep in the pond to check for clarity.

I originally added pieces of one bunch of watercress from the produce section under rocks in various sections of the stream. They all grew and survived the winters and produced large root systems. I found that these (and other plant) roots would trap the fine crud circulating from pond and stream. On occasion I would yank out excess growth and gobs of crud would be removed with it. Admittedly this also stirred up more crud but it was almost immediately removed by other roots and perhaps the filter. The actual cress and fallen leaves etc. would catch the algae that I would grab out with my hands. I recently had the sense to use a toilet brush.

I have recently had a dramatic decrease in algae, especially in the pond where it had been collecting on an impressive growth of underwater pond plants making them look like green/brown cotton candy. Unfortunately, I have recently made several changes so the source of improvement is unclear. First, it is a new spring. I had also removed half of the pond plant algae tangle. I had been out of fish food and the fish had been subsisting on algae and snail eggs, frog eggs or whatever but that stuff seemed to be declining so perhaps the fish were focusing on algae, and most interestingly to me, I suspected my mini-me was leaking and I first diverted flow away for a week (indicating a 10gal loss/week and a larger nearby waterfall spillage loss), then pulled it out, removed the sponges which were clean with no crud or stinky smell in the bottom, eventually sealing the leak and reset the filter after at least two weeks of no filter. Soon thereafter, the algae almost disappeared so that for the first time in two years, the underwater plants looked like they were in an aquarium.

I suspect that the long stream with plants is my major filtering agent. I was surprised that the mini-me seemed to be completely clean. I am pleased that my water has always been clear and that my fish, frogs, tadpoles, snails and lilies are (and always were) apparently healthy. I highly recommend a stream.

I have a lot more than 3 comets now, (ya think).

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I love your stream too.. what is that pretty purple plant on the left?

    Bookmark   August 11, 2011 at 11:22PM
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Thanks auntydarla, thats potato vine. It is usually found in the ground cover section. Very easy to grow in the ground or jammed under a rock in the stream. Totally wiped out with first freeze but can be kept inside. Can be Easily rooted in a glass of water or healed in. There is a green version that could take over a whole back yard in a spring-summer.

    Bookmark   August 12, 2011 at 7:21AM
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Lovely stream and pond. We can't keep the sweet potato vine here.. the woodchucks think it is planted just for them! Well, truth be told, they think all plants are stuck in the ground just for them.


    Bookmark   August 12, 2011 at 3:54PM
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Very nicely done. I especially like all your stone work.

    Bookmark   August 13, 2011 at 9:18PM
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Thanks guys, I guess I shouldn't let my little stone wall get covered with extra junk stone, but its always something to be done.

So Anne; do woodchucks look anything like the GEICO ad and what do they do to your plants? Our bad problem is deer but fortunately this back yard is fenced in.

    Bookmark   August 13, 2011 at 9:45PM
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Yes, they do look like the ones on the GEICO commmercial except mine are MUCH fatter because they have such wonderful plants to eat. hahaha I laughed myself silly the first time I saw that commercial.

Really I love them, especially the babies, but it is funny to see morning glory vines with no leaves as far as the little critters can climb and blossoms at just the very top of the vine. Also squash and tomatoes with bites taken out of them are delightful surprises.

In addition to the woodchucks, my sweet BF is now scalping the morning glory vines to feed a neighbor's pet rabbit.

I gave up on sweet potato vines. The woodchucks go into some kine of rapture when I plant them. I swear they have learned to levitate to get plants they like.


    Bookmark   August 15, 2011 at 5:24PM
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