Very first pond, send halp :)

Dezbian

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so I'm doing my very first summer tub. I live in Massachusetts and while it does get up into the 80s for summer its still a cooler climate, so I've got a couple questions just to start out.

1/ how long does it take for the nitrogen cycle to establish itself in a pond (and when I say pond I mean however large a container my complex will allow on my patio so we're talking probably 30 gallon max.) I'm just doing plants for now not sure about if I want to add critters yet after some thought.

2/ id be using a solar powered air pump that would receive speckled shade for a larger portion of the morning and early afternoon, will this affect it? does it run constantly as long as it is powered up? are there any brands that anyone suggests?

3/for when and if I do eventually add livestock, perhaps when temps stay up lol stupid new England weather is killing me!, does the pond need a filter if it is heavily stocked with plant life and has the air pump?

4/ how would mystery snails do in a porch pond and are they cold water hardy at all? I know they are escape artists but there are jerry rigs to help this I can make or use I just need to know how well they do in cooler temps

5/ and lastly does anybody have any suggestions for cooler water and shade tolerant pond plants, I've already decided on pennywort, water clover, and doing some herb boxes maybe floating on the top

thanks in advance and sorry for the long post, I'm very thorough before starting any aquarium or aquascaping project and I've only lived in massachucetts a year and since I originate from Georgia, I'm unsure of the cooler weather that speckles the entire year here lol :hilarious:
 

MrBryan723

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1. 1 month after you add critters or an ammonia source.
2. Maybe/probably. Kinda depends on how it's designed but being direct current i would assume full sun will make it stronger and the more shade, the weaker it will be. Maybe not a big deal. The higher the live stocking, the more of a problem it would be.
3. Probably, but you can get creative with filtration and use the air pump to make some sort of sponge filter or even a tube filed with lava rocks. All a filter really is is water flowing through a strata that can grow a large quantity of bb.
4. Cooler like 60s they do fine, i have no idea below that, but it wouldn't surprise me if they became very inactive below that. Or worse.
5. I could recommend hardy water lillies. There's a rather vast amount of plants that can do pretty well in cool water. Most any aquarium plants do better with warmer roots tho.
 
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Dezbian

Dezbian

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thank you so much! all of this is very helpful and thanks for letting me know the mysteries will be fine until the low 60s im planning on only keeping this up until the temps drop back down to the 70s area because that's when winter is coming lol sorry I couldn't help the opportunity, ill add the mysteries mid summer just to make sure theyre happy and breed.

water lilies aren't too big for a small pond? I wasn't sure as I've never worked directly with them and also I've never made my own filter on that large of a scale, I've done like betta sponge diys. do you have any suggestions as to what I could use to hold any media I use? would like a coke bottle be sufficient or should I go for sturdier?
 

MomeWrath

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Dezbian said:
thank you so much! all of this is very helpful and thanks for letting me know the mysteries will be fine until the low 60s im planning on only keeping this up until the temps drop back down to the 70s area because that's when winter is coming lol sorry I couldn't help the opportunity, ill add the mysteries mid summer just to make sure theyre happy and breed.

water lilies aren't too big for a small pond? I wasn't sure as I've never worked directly with them and also I've never made my own filter on that large of a scale, I've done like betta sponge diys. do you have any suggestions as to what I could use to hold any media I use? would like a coke bottle be sufficient or should I go for sturdier?
You can get dwarf water lilies that are cold hardy. I have one called Perry's Baby Red (it's my avatar pic) and the flowers are only about 3" across and the lily pads are about 5" max. It is cold hardy. You may need to overwinter it out of the pond up there, but I was able to leave mine out all winter last year. Overwintering them is sort of like digging up plant bulbs, but I don't remember exactly - you'd have to research that one.
Other plants that can tolerate the cold: hornwort, carolina fanwort, mermaid weed, lemon bacopa... these are all common names i don't know the scientific ones. They are also native to the Eastern US except the hornwort which has just made itself present across the globe anyway.
Water hyacinth is an excellent floating plant that can absorb pollutants from the water. It is not available in all states due to its ability to survive anywhere. It almost stopped the Mississippi. But if you can get it, it's probably just about all the filter you need.
If you just put a few rosy red minnows in there or white clouds you could keep them until it got very cool out. White clouds can tolerate water temps into the 50's. You'd have more to worry about them overheating in August really. With enough vegetative filtration you don't need to hook up a bunch of electricity.
 
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Dezbian

Dezbian

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Magicpenny75 said:
You can get dwarf water lilies that are cold hardy. I have one called Perry's Baby Red (it's my avatar pic) and the flowers are only about 3" across and the lily pads are about 5" max. It is cold hardy. You may need to overwinter it out of the pond up there, but I was able to leave mine out all winter last year. Overwintering them is sort of like digging up plant bulbs, but I don't remember exactly - you'd have to research that one.
Other plants that can tolerate the cold: hornwort, carolina fanwort, mermaid weed, lemon bacopa... these are all common names i don't know the scientific ones. They are also native to the Eastern US except the hornwort which has just made itself present across the globe anyway.
Water hyacinth is an excellent floating plant that can absorb pollutants from the water. It is not available in all states due to its ability to survive anywhere. It almost stopped the Mississippi. But if you can get it, it's probably just about all the filter you need.
If you just put a few rosy red minnows in there or white clouds you could keep them until it got very cool out. White clouds can tolerate water temps into the 50's. You'd have more to worry about them overheating in August really. With enough vegetative filtration you don't need to hook up a bunch of electricity.
This post just made my day! Thanks for all the plant info and the filtration! I thought that maybe some strategically picked plants would suffice but wasnt sure :) I'm so excited to research this!

I also read that platys can be cold water tolerant? Summer temps would allow tropical fish as long as I get them sold before end of August I was hoping maybe some dips into the 60s wouldn't harm them? Mass can be unpredictable lol
 

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Righto new monitor to the rescue but first whos halp and where can i find him.

But seriously
1. There is no time line
2.i have no idea about solar air pumps but i would be a built in battery in there the same as night lights in a garden.
3.depends on your plant biomass but yes probably you will need a filter.
4. The only thing i know about mystery snails is that i dont have any.
5. Theres heaps of plants that can be grown in your pond especially if you use a soil based substrate.
 

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