How to get rid of green hair algae in a backyard pond

Written by melanie l. marten
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Green hair algae is the bane of many backyard pond enthusiasts. This horrible plant mass clogs filters, fills waterfalls, and overruns everything in your aquatic garden. Luckily, there are several great ways to get rid of green hair algae in a backyard pond.

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Things you need

  • Pond with algae
  • Aquatic plants
  • Long stick or net
  • Barley straw
  • PH chemicals

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  1. 1

    Use a long stick or net to remove as much green hair algae as you can from your pond mechanically. The stick can be twirled around in the algae until there is a large clump and then you can just rip it out of your backyard pond. Use a smaller stick or net to scrape green hair algae off waterfall and watercourses in your water garden.

  2. 2

    Adjust the pH of your pond water so it is between 7.0 and 8.0. Green hair algae likes higher pH numbers, so correcting this is a great first step to hair algae reduction. Commercially available products are used to transform pH. Introduce barley straw liquid or blocks to your pond. The slow decomposition buffers pH as well as releases beneficial ingredients into the pond.

  3. 3

    Remove excess organic material from the bottom of you backyard pond. At the same time, reduce overfeeding of pond fish so it does not build up as quickly. Organic materials decomposes and releases too many nutrients into the pond. Too many nutrients results in algae bloom and green hair algae growth.

  4. 4

    Add more aquatic plants to your pond. The general rule of thumb for floating plants is that they should cover 40-60% of the pond surface. This will reduce sunlight reaching the bottom and sides where the green hair algae grows. Planted vegetation and oxygenator plants will help reduce hair algae by using up the nutrients in the pond water.

  5. 5

    Several commercial preparations of enzymes and bacteria work well to reduce green hair, blanket weed or string algae growth. They must be put in your pond weekly throughout the warm weather.
    Although a UV light will keep water clear, it will not reduce this sort of algae. Do not expect that, no matter what the sales people tell you.

Tips and warnings

  • Set up the pond correctly before green hair algae becomes a problem.
  • Avoid overfeeding fish to reduce organic waste.

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