Maintaining Your Water Garden

As I hint in this chapter's introduction, taking care of an installed and stocked water garden is pretty easy. You'll be out there admiring it and monitoring the progress of waterlily buds and other bloomers anyway, so just turn those frequent visits into a brief check-up.

The main water-garden water issue occurs when the water level drops. On hot summer days, you can lose a bit to evaporation. Top off the water garden with the hose; just make sure the end of the hose is immersed and that the flow of water doesn't dislodge a pot or plant. (Yes, I do caution you about the dangers of chlorine and chloramines in municipal tap water in the preceding section, but that info's for when you're pouring in many gallons for the initial filling; a little bit of those chemicals entering the water now shouldn't do your fish or plants any harm.)

If you come out some morning and the water level has dropped dramatically, your liner is damaged and leaking. Siphon off more water until you find the problem spot; then stop and patch it. (Patch kits are available wherever liners are sold.) Insert a garden hose so that one end is submerged. Then take the other end of the hose and take it so it is below the level of the end in the pond. Inhale once to start the suction and this should get the water flowing. If the pond is lower than the ground surrounding it, this manual suction won't work so get a submersible pump. Put it in the pond and attach tubing to the output end of the pump. Turn it on and it will rapidly drain the pond.

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