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The SPRING Algae Bloom

feed3What causes algae blooms? Sometimes natural causes, runoff of nutrients from around the pond after a storm or rain. Most common culprit of Algae blooms is the pond owner him or her self.

Algae is the result of nutrients, sunlight, and water. As a pond owner, I never recommend algae products as it is a vicious cycle. A balanced ecosystem of plants and fish can lead to a simple pond to enjoy rather than fool with. The number 1 problem with water gardening is feeding the fish. Read on my friend…


Feeding fish before the water temperature is above 55 degrees is always a bad idea, in the winter fish go into a hibernation -like stage. Their stomachs are inactive. Pellet or processed foods are dry and if fish eat them too early in the spring you can actually rupture a fishs’ stomach ,as the food expands quickly inside the stomach and shortly after feeding ,your fish can go belly up.

Also ,before you plant your pond plants in the spring, you will foul the water by feeding the fish. Pond fish “NEVER” need to be fed. Yes ,every fish-food container will tell you to feed fish 2-3 times per day, but take a second to figure out how they make their income. . .  .  Fish can eat 10 times a day –they do this at fish farms. However, this is normally too much waste for a pond and the extra waste produces a quick bloom of algae.

String Algae

String Algae

Fish, including koi and goldfish, naturally eat string algae and bug larvae and  insect eggs ,keeping mosquitoes and gnats to a minimum. Supplementing their natural diet not only stops that part of the natural ecosystem, but adds to the nutrients for algae. Adding Submerged plants can highly reduce algae.           Hornwort, red star ludwigia, lemon bacopa, and anacharis, all help starve algae and can even work in cooler water before floating plants like hyacinths and lettuce can takeover on the surface.

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  1. Ella Davis says:

    Argh, we just spent the day pulling out some “spring string” as I call it. We are in Georgia and are ordering some plants to arrive the week of April 13th. I can not wait until we have the new pretty lilies and our yard all ready for a summer of relaxation. We never feed our fish but still get a quick algae bloom here in late March as it warms. Our early tulips are spent so spring is about in full swing.

  2. Yes we got our spring Algae last month. We spent yesterday cleaning the pond, today its raingin, tomorrow its going to snow. The fish and frogs are going to be wondering what the heck is going on with all this activity and then winter returning. I need to get more green clean and microbe lift as soon as it warms up.


  3. I absolutely agree with this article and how a balance in the pond is really the best remedy to algae control.

    In the respect for full disclosure, I operate an eco-friendly pond business and while we do sell various things to help with algae, I have always said that one of the best and most logical things a pond owner can do is add desirable plants which helps with so many things including algae control.

    The one point of advice I would urge everyone to consider is staying away from chemical algaecides. We get calls and emails every year about how “all my fish died” and all that and it breaks your heart to hear it!

    In our experience chemicals are rarely if ever needed and kudo’s to you Zac for posting this article.

    Mark Washburn

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