Testing The DynaTrap Insect Trap

Display dt1200Early this summer we had some decent rains in Iowa, and usually with that, you’ll see a pretty good crop of gnats and mosquitoes come along.

And they did just that.

You couldn’t go out in our backyard in the evening and not get bit by something or many things actually and so this seemed like a good opportunity to do a little testing (and scratching).

For a few years now we’ve had the Dynatrap flying insect trap hanging in our shop. We leave the doors open often enough in there that we get some visiting bugs and the Dynatrap has done a good job of catching a lot of them. I was so impressed with it that I posted a bit of a review here last season.

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When Pond Dye Makes Sense

blue pond dyeThere are pond owners that love or hate the stuff but the fact is, pond dye can be pretty useful from time to time.

Years ago, about all one had to work with was a vibrant blue coloring that often made your natural pond look more like the colorful waters you see around a putt-putt golf course or amusement park.  And in truth, some people actually like this look, while others simply can’t stand it.  

These days though, there are other options…thankfully.

These include a black colored dye, and a black-blue combination which when either is applied to a pond, it will create a pretty natural appearance.  You’d be hard pressed to find a person that would even notice it compared the blue color alone.

But here’s the question that comes up now and then.

Is pond dye really helpful or necessary to improve a pond’s appearance?

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A Brand New Look For Our Old Pond Blog

If you’re a long time reader of our Pond Blog here, you’ll likely notice that things a look a little different today.   Yes, it’s true, we’ve done a little revamping here and wanted to improve a few things on the site with the hope that it will be easier for you to find the … Read more

Pond Aeration Using Solar Power


Can I use solar power to run my pond aerator?

It’s a question that’s coming up more and more often.  And I have to admit that I’d be asking the same question myself if I were in your shoes.  Solar just makes a lot of sense when it comes to running something like pond aeration, at least on paper.

There are small pond fountains, in particular, that are running off solar, but what we’re talking about here is the concept of powering a large pond aeration system.

I’m not intimately familiar with all things solar and I wouldn’t consider myself and expert on the technology at all but I do have a few tips to share with you on the subject here.

I’m very pro-solar and admire the people who end up powering part or all of their home appliances with help from the sun.  It’s a grand, eco-friendly idea and I hope that legislators and the powers that be will make this way of producing energy more affordable and accessible for everyone.

In terms of running a pond aerator with solar power, it’s certainly possible to do it.  But there are some challenges to it and I wanted to address those below.

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Dosing The BioSphere Pro Correctly


For many years now, the Biosphere Pro natural pond treatment has been a mainstay for us in cleaning up ponds.  They’re natural in terms of what they use to do the work, which is various forms of beneficial bacteria, and these are uniquely time released to provide a consistent infusion of good microbes into a pond system.

Generally speaking, they’re very clean and easy to work with.  The Biospheres are pre-dosed for certain sizes of ponds and you simply pull them out of the box and toss them in the pond.  Once wet, they activate and will work for a full month at a time.

All of this probably sounds really good and they’ve done very well for many people who are trying to get their pond to look better and reduce unwanted plant growth, bad smells, and organic mucky build up in a pond.

But this is not to say they are perfect.  In fact no bacteria will necessarily be the answer to every problem that comes up in pond care, and there are times when they produce what could be called inconsistent results.  Because of this, we’ve always looked for ways to optimize the performance of these good bugs, whether it be in testing water parameters, or making sure there’s good levels of dissolved oxygen in the water and all that can be helpful.

However there’s one other simple thing that needs to be addressed to get the most out of any pond bacteria, and it’s not always noted directly on the instructions or product label.

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Can Acid Rain Affect Your Pond?

We don’t hear as much about acid rain in the news any more.  Certainly not like we used in to the 70’s or 80’s.  Back then, new research was emerging that indicated that rainwater was becoming more acidic due to emissions of sulphur dioxide and nitrogen oxide.  Most of these emissions come from the burning of fossil fuels released by automobiles, or power plants that use coal or oil to generate electricity.  Nature can also produce some of these gases, such as when volcanos release various gases into the air.

The gases that are produced from these processes end up combining with water vapor in the atmosphere and form nitric and sulphuric acids.  So the term “acid rain” is actually quite accurate in it’s description.

But a question came up regarding acid rain.  Since we don’t hear so much about it anymore, is it still happening?  Is it a problem?  And specifically for a pond owner (which is who this article is mainly for), can it affect my pond in any way?

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