Questions Answered: Winter Koi Pond and Water Garden Care

Questions Answered: Winter Koi Pond and Water Garden Care

Questions Answered: Winter Koi Pond and Water Garden Care


Winter is a season of fun and family but can also be a season of harsh cold and snow. For many pond-owners, the winter months can be a scary time for their fish and plant life. You shouldn’t fear though, because with the right actions you can keep your ponds and water gardens alive and thriving through the cold and icy temperatures.

Do Koi Hibernate?
As the seasons change, your koi change as well. Koi rely on mother nature to determine how to live and move about. As the air begins to get colder and the water temperature begins to fall, koi begin to slow down and use less energy. As cold-blooded animals, they sense the surrounding temperature and react accordingly. They begin to eat less and will also use less oxygen.

Should I Move Them Inside?
If your pond is less than 3 feet deep, you run the risk of the entire pond freezing and as a result your koi will die. We recommend you bring them inside until the temperature of the water returns to at least 60oF. If your pond is deeper than 3 feet you can keep them in the pond, but you need to make sure you aerate and de-ice if necessary.

What About My Plants?
We recommend that you go through and decide which plants are hearty enough to make it through the winter. For the smaller plants that you can replace in the Spring, remove them so that they don’t decay in the pond during the winter. For you medium-sized plants, you can bring them indoors and store them in a tub of water until the Spring. For your big and hearty plants, move them to the deepest part of the pond.

Why Should I Aerate and De-Ice?
Aeration is very important because it allows the oxygen in your pond to move around while also keeping a hole in the ice clear and reduce the overall amount of ice that can build up. Here is a link to our aerators. An aerator is a lot more cost effective compared to a pond heater and can provide almost the same amount of protection for your pond. 

Good Tips
Make sure to prepare your pond for the winter by removing all leaves and debris to ensure that your pond will stay healthy during the cold temperatures. Also be sure to monitor the water level and top off if necessary. During the winter, check to make sure that all debris is removed, you may want to go through and remove any additional leaf build up. Lastly, if you think the ice is beginning to be a bit much, don’t break the ice by hitting it, it can cause shockwaves in the water that can harm your wildlife. Make holes by setting a warm pot or teakettle of water on top to create holes for oxygen.

As always, if you have any questions, please feel free to reach out to our experts to help you with your needs. 

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