Even in Southern California, where winters are mild, there’s still steps to be taken to ensure your pond doesn’t suffer. This is especially true if you have fish in your pond, as they will act and need to be taken care of differently in the winter. Take a look at these few simple steps you can take to ensure your pond stays beautiful all throughout the winter and into spring.
Taking Care of Your Plants
You should trim dying plant material so that it doesn’t fall and build up in the pond later. Hardy plants can be moved deeper into the water (about 18 inches) to keep them from freezing in case it gets too cold. Tropical Lilies are not as tolerant of cold weather and should be moved inside to a basement or garage. Make sure they are given plenty of water so that they don’t dry out.
Cleaning out Leaves and Debris
Leaves falling in your pond can change the ph level and the oxygen content of the water, which can be very harmful to the fish. Therefore, if you have fish in your pond, it’s very important to use a skimmer or other tool and clean out the pond regularly. This is important at any time of year, but autumn and winter is when leaves begin falling constantly and cleaning the pond must be made a priority.
Taking Care of Your Koi and Goldfish
When the water temperature drops, the fish can safely hibernate at the bottom of the pond, provided there is enough air for them to breathe. While not a problem in warmer regions, in colder climates the pond will freeze over in the winter and you must make sure there’s an air pocket for the fish. Also, as the temperature drops, the fish’s metabolism starts to slow and feeding should be reduced. If the water gets below 40 degrees, you should stop feeding the fish entirely and wait until spring starts again.