Sunday, May 06, 2012

Stock Tank Pond Update

After many weeks of green, the stock tank pond finally cleared. One day I could suddenly see a few inches down, then the next day further, and after about three days I could see the bottom. It was a relief to verify that all five goldfish are alive and well.

stock tank pond
The water plants have indeed spread to cover more than half of the surface. The parrot feather in particular is going crazy and has already provided a home for at least two rounds of baby mosquito fish, which are born live and need some place to hide from their hungry elders. Suddenly the pond is teeming with fish, so I guess we will learn about Mother Nature's balancing act in terms of flora versus fauna. We do not feed the fish, other than to provide anacharis, which the goldfish view as quite tasty. I can see from this photo that I should push the taller plants, dwarf papyrus and Louisiana iris, in toward the center, although the papyrus keeps blowing over in high wind, so I have it wedged up against the landing rock.

Colorado water lily
Wanvisa water lily
Now, with a week of 90 degree weather, we have the opposite problem. Brown foamy looking algae sludge is floating up from the bottom of the tank to the surface. I have skimmed every day, and this morning we got rain, which from my reading may make the issue disappear for a while. The water lilies are ecstatic with the sun, with the Colorado having three blooms open at once and three more buds breaking water. Wanvisa is a little behind due to a later start, but also had a single speckled bloom open with its sister. These blooms don't seem to last as long as the Colorado blooms, which stay above water for several days each. Once they sink, I pinch them off back near the pot, along with outer leaves that start to decay. The red leaved plant, whose name I've forgotten, has actually died back somewhat and seems to have something eating its leaves, although it is actually blooming. Can anybody identify it for me?

blue bottle tree
I decided to forego drinking 24 bottles of riesling to get blue bottles for the bottle tree and just ordered two cases from a winemaking supply house via Amazon. A visit to Home Depot rounded up two caps for cedar posts, one square and one finial,  that I combined to finish off the top of the post.

new stock tank pond garden
Although the roses are through their first flush, many of my new plants are starting to get a bit more established, so the new part of the garden is making me happy every morning or evening that I venture out. More big ideas are percolating, but jewelry school is eating all my time at the moment.